Shin-Soo Choo might not need surgery on thumb

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According to Anthony Castrovince of MLB.com, Shin-Soo Choo may be able to avoid surgery on his right thumb.

Choo sprained his thumb while attempting to make a diving catch against the Athletics last Friday. After being examined by Dr. Thomas Graham at the Cleveland Clinic on Tuesday, it was determined that Choo will wear a brace on the thumb for seven to 10 days before being re-evaluated.

If the thumb responds, Indians trainer Lonnie Soloff said surgery would not be needed and Choo could return much sooner than the six-to-eight week timetable originally presented over the weekend.

“It’s good news,” manager Manny Acta said. “We’re still going to have to
wait 10 days to see where that takes us. But it will be a great boost
for us if he doesn’t need surgery and we can have him back a lot sooner
than we were anticipating.”

Choo, who turns 28 next week, is batting .286/.390/.475 with 13 homers, 43 RBI and 12 stolen bases this season, proving to be one of the few bright spots for the last-place Indians. He was a near-lock to make his first All-Star appearance until his recent injury. With Choo down, right-hander Fausto Carmona will represent the Tribe in Anaheim next week, instead.

MLB may introduce “tacky” baseballs in 2018

ST. LOUIS, MO - APRIL 25: Baseballs sit in the St. Louis Cardinals dugout prior to a game between the Pittsburgh Pirates and the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium on April 25, 2014 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by David Welker/Getty Images)
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Jeff Passan of Yahoo has an interesting report today. MLB and Rawlings are developing a new baseball. It will have a tacky surface on the leather, allowing pitchers to get a better grip without having to resort to sunscreen and rosin and pine tar and stuff. Substances which, in theory, are for grip but which are really used by pitchers to doctor the ball, with MLB and opposing hitters mostly looking the other way.

They tested the new balls in the Arizona Fall League last year and Passan talks to a couple of the pitchers who used the ball. More testing would be required, though, so we’re not likely to see the new balls until at least 2018.

As you know, baseball players love change, so I’m sure we won’t hear another thing about the ball and its introduction will go off seamlessly.

Wait. It’ll still have seams. You know what I mean.

Here we go: Tim Tebow reports to Mets camp

PORT ST. LUCIE, FL - SEPTEMBER 20: Tim Tebow #15 of the New York Mets speaks at a press conference after a work out at an instructional league day at Tradition Field on September 20, 2016 in Port St. Lucie, Florida. (Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images)
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The first few days of spring training have been pretty quiet. Guys are going about their business and games are being played, but we haven’t had any news or controversy or silliness or anything fun like that. That’s about to change, however, as Tim Tebow has arrived at Mets camp.

Tebow, a non-roster invite, arrived at the Mets facility in Port St. Lucie, Florida this morning and, unlike every other non-roster invite, had a press conference. You may be surprised to learn that he’s in great shape, is excited to get going and wants to improve steadily each day.

The plan for Tebow is to be a part of the minor league camp, not the major league one, so he’s not going to be as visible at workouts as you might expect. He will be playing in some major league spring training games, however, at least until we get deeper into spring training, after which you’d assume that veterans and players with a real shot of making the big club will play longer.

In the meantime, you can buy Tebow shirts. But not Curtis Granderson ones, it seems: