Nick Johnson may need wrist surgery

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Nick Johnson Yankees.jpgAccording to Wallace Matthews of ESPNNewYork, Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said that Nick Johnson may need surgery to remove inflamed tissue from his right wrist.

Johnson was already expected to miss four weeks, but if the injury requires surgery, he would likely miss an additional four to six weeks, placing his return somewhere around early August. The team is currently hoping that the wrist responds to a recent cortisone shot.

“It’s my intention to learn if [the shot] worked as soon as possible,”
Cashman said on the field at Yankee Stadium before Saturday’s
Yankees-Twins game. “If not, then we want to go right to the surgery.
When healthy, we know what this guy can do, but he can’t do anything for
us right now.”

Johnson, who was signed to a one-year, $5.75 million contract during the winter, was batting .167/.388/.306 with two homers, eight RBI and a 23/24 K/BB ratio before injuring the wrist last Friday against the Red Sox.

Cashman, who said that he “knew what he was getting into” when he signed Johnson, said that for now, the team will use players from the current roster or Triple-A — like Juan Miranda — to take his place in the lineup. I’ll put extra emphasis on for now.

While surgery is a sobering possibility for Bombers fans, the good news is that Nick Swisher was back in the lineup on Saturday and Andy Pettitte didn’t skip a beat in his return to the rotation, tossing 6 1/3 innings of shutout ball in a 7-1 win over the Twins.

Jered Weaver dealing with “dead arm”

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Padres starter Jered Weaver lasted just two-thirds of an inning in Wednesday afternoon’s Cactus League appearance against the Royals. He yielded four runs on three hits, throwing 31 pitches before getting pulled. His spring ERA now sits at an ugly 10.13.

Weaver said he’s been dealing with a “dead arm” since his last bullpen session, but added he’s dealt with the issue in previous springs, Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune reports.

The Padres signed Weaver to a one-year, $3 million contract last month. The right-hander is coming off of the worst season of his 11-year career. His fastball averaged a career-low 83 MPH and he put up a 5.06 ERA with a 103/51 K/BB ratio in 178 innings.

Ian Kinsler doesn’t think Puerto Rico or Dominican Republic players play the game the right way

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Update: Whoops…

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Earlier, Craig wrote about Dan Duquette’s dogwhistle language in his criticism of Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista. We have some more dogwhistling, this time coming from Tigers (and Team U.S.) second baseman Ian Kinsler. Via Billy Witz of The New York Times:

I hope kids watching the W.B.C. can watch the way we play the game and appreciate the way we play the game as opposed to the way Puerto Rico plays or the Dominican plays. That’s not taking anything away from them. That just wasn’t the way we were raised. They were raised differently and to show emotion and passion when you play. We do show emotion; we do show passion. But we just do it in a different way.

The goal of the World Baseball Classic, created by Major League Baseball, is to promote baseball across the globe. It’s players like Puerto Rico’s Javier Baez who are doing the best job in that regard, not boring white guys from the U.S. Potential baseball fans are not swayed into liking the sport when a player hits a home run and solemnly puts his head down to stroll the bases. They get excited and energized when players show emotion, flip their bats, celebrate. Baez did more to make baseball appeal to new and lapsed audiences with his premature celebration tag than the entire U.S. team has done this tournament.

Furthermore, it is hypocritical to want to diversify the sport’s audience while squelching incoming cultures.

Jim Leyland also got in on the action:

Go Puerto Rico.