Troubling news here for the White Sox.
According to Mark D. Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune, right-hander Jake Peavy has been diagnosed with rotator cuff tendinitis and might not be able to make his scheduled Cactus League start Thursday against the Cubs.
If he’s unable to make that outing, the White Sox will probably also scratch him from his first scheduled start of the regular season, April 6 in Kansas City.
Peavy was a bit behind the other Chicago pitchers when spring training began because he was still in recovery mode from July surgery to repair a detached latissimus dorsi muscle. He told reporters Sunday that his current rotator cuff issues have nothing to do with that procedure, but he also admitted that the discomfort has been with him since his March 6 debut.
Here’s a quote from Peavy gathered Sunday afternoon by Scott Merkin of MLB.com:
“I’m not going to sit here and say it’s a setback because we don’t know what it is yet,” said Peavy, “but certainly things have slowed down.”
If Peavy isn’t ready when camp breaks, look for 28-year-old Philip Humber to draw a few early season starts.
Veteran utilityman Reid Brignac is in camp with the Astros on a minor league deal. The 31-year-old is close to being done as a major leaguer as he owns a career .219/.264/.309 triple-slash line across parts of nine seasons. In an effort to prolong his big league career, Brignac is now attempting to become a switch-hitter, MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart reports.
I’m going to try it out this year. It was something that I just thought long and hard about and I was like, ‘OK, I’m going to try and see how it goes.’ I used to switch-hit when I was younger off and on, nothing consistent. I could always handle the bat right-handed. I play golf right-handed, so I do a lot of things that way that feel natural.
I just want to get to the point where I’m trying to stay in games, not get pinch-hit for, not starting games because a lefty is starting. … That could help me stay in the games longer. I’m trying to add a new element. I play multiple positions and now if I can switch hit and be consistent at it, then that can only help me.
As Brignac mentions, he’s also verstile. He’s a shortstop by trade, but has also logged plenty of innings at second base and third base, and has occasionally played corner outfield.
There aren’t any examples — at least that I can think of — where players began switch-hitting late in their careers and actually succeeding in the major leagues. As the saying goes, you can’t teach an old dog new tricks. But here’s hoping Brignac bucks the trend.
Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons fell off the map a bit last year due to a combination of the Angels’ mediocrity, Simmons’ lack of offense, and a month-plus of missed action due to a torn ligament in his left thumb.
Simmons is still as good and as smart as ever on defense. That was on full display Monday when the Angels hosted the Padres for an afternoon spring exhibition.
With a runner on first base and nobody out in the top of the second inning, Carlos Asuaje grounded a 2-0 J.C. Ramirez fastball to right field. The runner, Hunter Renfroe, advanced to third base. Meanwhile, Asuaje wandered a little too far off the first base bag. Simmons cut off the throw to first base, spun around and fired to Luis Valbuena at first base. Valbuena swiped the tag on Asuaje for the first out of the inning.