Derek Jeter is eligible to return from the disabled list as soon as June 29 against the Brewers. He’ll certainly make it his mission to be ready by then, but Jimmy Rollins tells Jayson Stark of ESPN.com that the calf injury could linger for the rest of the season.
“The best advice I can give Derek is, ‘You’re going to get healed in the offseason.'”
And Rollins should know. He strained his right calf muscle last April and was limited to just 20 games over the first three months of the season while serving separate month-long stints on the disabled list. It wasn’t until the offseason did he have the opportunity to heal completely.
“I don’t even think about my calf injury anymore,” Rollins says now, 14 months after he suffered a Grade 2 strain of his calf while running simple wind sprints before a game last April. “But all last year? That was No. 1 — before anything, before I stretched, before I hit, before I looked at who was pitching. It was, ‘How’s my calf?'”
“When you think you’re good, you’re not even close,” he said. “Still take more time. … No matter what your mind thinks, your muscles don’t speak English.”
Granted, these are somewhat different situations. Rollins was diagnosed with a Grade 2 strain while Jeter’s is a Grade 1, which is considered the least severe. Still, this is a troubling scenario for a 36-year-old shortstop who currently has the lowest batting average, on-base percentage, slugging percentage and OPS of his career.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Cubs have signed pitcher Brett Anderson to a contract, pending a physical. Anderson, apparently, impressed the Cubs during a bullpen session held in Arizona recently. According to Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports, the deal is for $3.5 million, but incentives can bring the total value up to $10 million.
Anderson, 28, has only made a total of 53 starts and 12 relief appearances over the past five seasons due to a litany of injuries. This past season, he made just three starts and one relief appearance, yielding 15 runs on 25 hits and four walks with five strikeouts in 11 1/3 innings. The lefty dealt with back, wrist, and blister issues throughout the year.
When he’s healthy, Anderson is a solid arm to have at the back of a starting rotation or in the bullpen. The defending world champion Cubs aren’t risking much in bringing him on board.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports provides an interesting window into how teams handle a player’s contract after he has died in an accident. It was reported on Sunday that Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura died in a car accident in the Dominican Republic. He had three guaranteed years at a combined $19.25 million as well as two $12 million club options with a $1 million buyout each for the 2020-21 seasons.
What happens to that money? Well, that depends on the results of a toxicology report, Rosenthal explains. If it is revealed that Ventura was driving under the influence, payment to his estate can be nullified. The Royals may still choose to pay his estate some money as a gesture of good will, but they would be under no obligation to do so. However, if Ventura’s death was accidental and not caused by his driving under the influence, then his contract remains fully guaranteed and the Royals would have to pay it towards his estate. The Royals would be reimbursed by insurance for an as yet unknown portion of that contract.
The results of the toxicology report won’t be known for another three weeks, according to Royals GM Dayton Moore. Dominican Republic authorities said that there was no alcohol found at the scene.
Ventura’s situation is different than that of Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez, who died in a boating accident this past September. Fernandez was not under contract beyond 2016. He was also legally drunk and cocaine was found in his system after the accident. Still, it is unclear whether or not Fernandez was driving the boat. As a result, his estate will receive an accidental death payment of $1.05 million as well as $450,000 through the players’ standard benefits package, Rosenthal points out.