We’ve heard some weird injuries over the years, but this one is up there.
According to Jason Beck of MLB.com, Tigers’ prospect left-hander Andy Oliver had his Friday start with Triple-A Toledo pushed back after playing with a slingshot on Thursday. I’m not kidding.
No, he wasn’t grounded or anything, but his hand apparently became sore after he used muscles that he doesn’t normally use.
Here’s the word from Triple-A Toledo manager Phil Nevin.
“I think he realizes the ramifications of missing today’s start,” Nevin said. “But it’s part of growing up and realizing priorities. We’re not angry with him or anything like that. It’s not a huge deal.”
Oliver, 23, has a 3.64 ERA and 31/12 K/BB ratio over his first five starts with the Mud Hens this season. Assuming he doesn’t break Mr. Wilson’s window again, he could eventually be a consideration to replace the struggling Phil Coke in the Tigers’ starting rotation.
Cubs infielder/outfielder Ben Zobrist has been placed on the 10-day disabled list with back soreness. The move is retroactive to April 14. While it doesn’t appear to be the precursor to any serious injury, Zobrist has already missed six straight days of activity after feeling his back tighten up last weekend. Should he see the minimum time on the DL, as expected, he’ll be eligible to return by the start of the Cubs’ series against the Indians on Tuesday.
Prior to his injury, the 36-year-old outfielder raked an impressive .326/.408/.465 with three extra-base hits in 49 plate appearances. He last appeared for the Cubs during their homestand last weekend and helped propel the team to a 14-10 win over the Braves with three hits, two walks and two RBI. Provided that he can remain healthy going forward, it’s a promising start for the veteran outfielder, who has yet to return to the All-Star-worthy numbers he posted with the club in 2016.
With Zobrist sidelined for the time being, Ian Happ and Albert Almora Jr. have shared the leadoff spot and center field duties over the last week. Happ went 0-for-8 with six strikeouts in two games before passing the baton to Almora, who collected five hits and two RBI in 11 at-bats.