Red Sox prospect Ryan Kalish has torn shoulder muscle

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Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe brings us some unfortunate news about promising Red Sox outfield prospect Ryan Kalish.

The 23-year-old injured his shoulder while diving for a ball on Thursday night at Triple-A Pawtucket and has now been diagnosed with a partially torn labrum.

Kalish will try to rehab the injury first, but season-ending surgery is a strong possibility if things don’t go well out of the gate. Either way, he’s going to be out for several months.

A ninth-round pick in the 2006 MLB Amateur Draft, Kalish has carved a slow but steady path through the Red Sox farm system. He posted a healthy .884 OPS, 13 home runs and 25 stolen bases across 343 plate appearances last season between Double-A and Triple-A.

This season he opened as Pawtucket’s starting center fielder.

With J.D. Drew headed for free agency in the winter, Kalish may be in line to take over in right field for the big league club in 2012. His shoulder should be back to 100 percent by then.

Must-Click Link: “Skunk in the Outfield”

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Sam Miller of ESPN has an amazingly fantastic story today. It’s about a high school tournament baseball game in Rhode Island in 2006. It’s not your typical game story or oral history or look-to-the-past-to-see-the-future kind of thing. The only nod to such conventionality is mention of the fact that former Red Sox prospect Ryan Westmoreland played in the game. That’s mostly a footnote.

No, the article is about a trick play — “skunk in the outfield” — concocted by one of the coaches. About how it played out and what went into it before, during and after it happened. Along the way Miller talks about the nature of trick plays and offers a good three dozen amazing insights into the psychology of young baseball players and the strategy of baseball as it unfolds in real time.

Each of these observations could anchor its own story but here they form a grand mosaic. And that’s only mild hyperbole, if in fact it’s hyperbole at all. Indeed, most treatments of such a play would be some video clip with a “wow, look what happened here!” sort of couching. Miller gives a more than ten-year-old trick play an epic treatment that is every bit as enlightening as it is entertaining.

Set some time aside to read this today.

Rubby De La Rosa to undergo a second Tommy John Surgery

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This is unfortunate: Diamondbacks reliever Rubby De La Rosa will undergo Tommy John surgery. This will be the second Tommy John procedure of his career, the first coming back in 2011.

De La Rosa has had elbow  issues for his entire career. Last year his UCL was barking again and he underwent stem cell therapy to try to avoid a second surgery, but it obviously hasn’t worked out. He’s pitched in only nine games this year, allowing four earned runs in seven and two-thirds innings, striking out 12.

I first saw De La Rosa in spring training in 2011. I thought his stuff was pretty phenomenal and figured he’d be a good one. Great stuff is often a function of heavy strain on an elbow, however, and pitchers breaking is, unfortunately, the rule in baseball far more than the exception.

He’ll miss a year at least. We likely won’t see him until spring of 2019, most likely on a minor league deal.