David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal Constitution has an update on Chipper Jones, who “has been battling tendinitis in his surgically-repaired left knee.”
Jones downplayed the significance of the tendinitis, pointing out that he went through something similar following knee surgery in 1994 and calling it just “one of the steps along the way” to recovery.
Now that you’re starting to get into the every day hustle bustle of getting yourself ready for spring training, you’ve got aches and pains. Tendinitis is just one of those steps you’ve got to get by. Ever since I’ve been in here every day getting treatment, I’ve had no limitations.
According to O’Brien, as part of that treatment Jones “wears a pad on his knee and cortisone, an anti-inflammatory, is electronically distributed through the skin.” He’s been taking batting practice regularly, but has yet to resume agility drills or take ground balls at third base since tearing his ACL on August 10.
He’s aiming to be ready for Opening Day, but the 39-year-old former MVP has quite a few hurdles to clear before then.
The Diamondbacks have signed free agent left-hander Jorge De La Rosa to a minor league deal, per a team announcement on Sunday. The contract includes an invitation to spring training. Nick Piecoro of AZCentral.com adds that De La Rosa stands to make $2.25 million if he secures a spot on the major league roster, with up to $600,000 in incentives if he pitches out of the bullpen and up to $1 million in incentives if he pitches out of the starting rotation.
The 35-year-old is expected to compete for a bullpen role after spending the better part of a decade in the Rockies’ rotation. He capped a nine-year run with Colorado in 2016, finishing the year with a 5.51 ERA, 4.2 BB/9 and 7.3 SO/9 over 134 innings. Despite his struggles out of the rotation, he found limited success in a three-game stint in the bullpen, striking out 10 of 26 batters and holding the opposition to just three hits and one earned run in eight innings.
The veteran lefty is set to join a bullpen comprised of right-handers Randall Delgado, Jake Barrett and Fernando Rodney, along with a number of unproven candidates on similar minor league contracts. His age and command issues may be off-putting, but the promise he showed as a reliever should give the Diamondbacks some upside as they attempt to redeem a league-worst bullpen in 2017.
Blue Jays’ third baseman Josh Donaldson is expected to miss up to three weeks with a right calf strain, reports John Lott. Donaldson reportedly felt some discomfort in his calf during sprinting drills on Friday and was diagnosed with what looked like a mild strain after undergoing an MRI on Saturday. According to Lott, the 31-year-old is on crutches for the next few days and will likely miss 2-3 weeks of spring training.
Donaldson had a similar scare at the start of the 2016 season, when he limped out of the batter’s box during the Blue Jays’ first regular season road trip with a right calf strain. He returned to DH two days later, however, and was back on the field in less than a week’s time. Blue Jays’ GM Ross Atkins told MLB.com’s Corey Long that the two calf injuries are unrelated, and expects that Donaldson will recover in similar fashion this spring — well before Opening Day comes around.