Luis Salazar is out of the hospital and on the mend following his awful injury in the Braves dugout a couple of weeks ago. Mark Bowman of MLB.com has both the story and video of Salazar talking about his recovery.
“I’d like to thank God that I’m talking to you guys and that I’m alive,” Salazar said. “God gave me a second chance in this world, and I’m going to take advantage of it. I really appreciate it.”
As you can see in the pic, he looks pretty good all things considered, with the area around his left eye swollen but not particularly awful looking. Kind of like a boxer the morning after a fight, actually. He’s able to drive and he’ll soon be rejoining the Braves minor leaguers as he takes the help of high-A Lynchburg.
Salazar has no recollection of what went down after the incident. The last thing he remembers was the ball hitting him and then nothing. Our brains get us into a lot of trouble, but they’re pretty good at protecting us too.
Oft-injured pitcher Josh Johnson is retiring from baseball, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick is reporting.
Johnson, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2013. The right-hander underwent his third Tommy John surgery in September 2015 but wasn’t able to bounce back.
Johnson spent most of his career with the Marlins, but also pitched for the Blue Jays in the big leagues, as well as the Padres in the minors. He retires with a career 3.40 ERA, 915 strikeouts across 998 innings in the majors, and two All-Star nominations. Johnson led the National League with a 2.30 ERA in 2010, finishing fifth in NL Cy Young Award balloting. One wonders what he could have accomplished if he was able to stay healthy.
The Angels are nearing a multi-year deal with free agent third baseman Luis Valbuena, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. It’s believed to be a two-year contract with a third-year option.
Valbuena, 31, hit .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances in 2016. He missed most of the second half with a hamstring injury, for which he underwent surgery in late August.
Valbuena has played a majority of his career at third base, but also has extensive experience at second base and has racked up innings at first base and shortstop as well. He won’t play every day for the Angels, as Yunel Escobar lays claim to third base and C.J. Cron first base, but he will give them flexibility and a left-handed bat off the bench.