Ryan Madson sidelined with numbness in his pitching hand

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Michael Stutes pitched a scoreless ninth inning in last night’s 1-0 walkoff win over the Athletics. While it wasn’t a save situation, Ryan Madson was curious in his continued absence.

According to Ray Perillo of the Philadelphia Inquirer, Phillies manager Charlie Manuel admitted after the game that Madson was unavailable due to numbness in his pitching hand. He hasn’t pitched since last Saturday against the Mariners.

“For about a week now, he didn’t have feeling in his hand,” Manuel said. “Today, hopefully, he got it taken care of, and he should be able to pitch in three or four days.”

Manuel wasn’t specific about when the injury took place, but it’s believed that the numbness stems from when Madson was hit in the hand by a comebacker off the bat of David Murphy on May 20. Madson has a 4.15 ERA and 11/4 K/BB ratio over 13 innings since the date in question.

Stutes and Antonio Bastardo figure to share the closer role over the next couple of days, but one wonders if they would ramp up their pursuit of Heath Bell if Madson’s hand continues to be an issue.

Phillies, Jake Arrieta having a “dialogue”

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No, not like a Socratic dialogue, in which each side, in a mostly cooperative, but intellectually confrontational manner interrogate one another as a means of testing assertions and finding truths, though that would be an AMAZING thing for baseball players and teams to do. Rather, low-level talks about possible interest in Jake Arrieta, baseball free agent.

Arrieta is probably the top free agent still available, now that Yu Darvish, J.D. Martinez and Eric Hosmer have signed. Philly has money — it’s a big market — and could use a pitcher, but Jon Heyman, who, much like Plato did for Socrates, reported the dialogue, says they’re not looking to go long term with anyone.

It may make sense for Arrieta to take a so-called “pillow contract” and come back on the market in a year, but if he’s willing to accept a one-year deal, there are a lot of teams other than Philly who may offer one, and you’d have to figure Arrieta would prefer to pitch for a team more likely to contend.

Dialogues are cool, though. You should go have one over lunch.