Good news, courtesy of the Tampa Bay Times‘ Marc Topkin:
Tony Tufano, 72, the victim in the Rays minor league RHP Matt Bush DUI hit-and-run crash, was released from the hospital today and is home, daughter in law Shannon Moore said.
Tufano is using a walker and will receive home care, with family attorney Richard Hirsch saying there’s a “long road” to recovery with “hundreds of thousands” in medical bills. But Moore said the family is excited for Tufano’s return.
Bush is still in jail in Charlotte County, Florida with a $1.015 million bond. It was revealed recently that he was actually involved in three different wrecks on March 22, and he currently faces seven separate charges.
The Rays placed Bush on the restricted list on March 30. He’s doubtful to ever pitch professionally again.
Jonathan Broxton struck out the side Sunday to earn his first save for the Royals. His outing Wednesday didn’t go so well.
After Oakland’s Seth Smith reached on an Alcides Escobar error in the 12th, Broxton walked two batters and hit two more to take a blown save and a loss in a 5-4 game.
Broxton retired the first batter he faced prior to Escobar’s miscue. After the two walks, the tying run scored on a groundout and Broxton was in position to still send the game to the 13th. Only then he plunked Yoenis Cespedes and Jonny Gomes with back-to-back pitches, ending the contest.
Broxton, who was signed to set up for Joakim Soria, has looked pretty shaky since the beginning of the spring and doesn’t seem long for the closer’s role in Kansas City. Greg Holland is probably next in line, and Aaron Crow, who started games this spring before being shifted back to the pen, could also be an option. Crow actually got a save Tuesday for pitching a scoreless seventh inning in a 3-0 game called in the top of the eighth.
Stephen Drew, who is making his way back from a fractured ankle, will take a step forward on Thursday, hitting in an extended spring training game.
The plan is for Drew to take four at-bats in the game and run lightly out of the box if he puts the ball in play, manager Kirk Gibson told Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic.
Drew is still likely at least a couple of weeks away from beginning a rehab assignment even without any setbacks, and there’s not much chance that he’ll see any action for the Diamondbacks this month. Still, all of the reports since spring training began have been favorable, though it’s helped that the Diamondbacks have insisted on bringing him along slowly.
As first reported by Bill Ladson of MLB.com, Nationals closer Drew Storen underwent minor surgery Wednesday on his throwing elbow.
The procedure, performed in D.C., was designed to remove bone fragments and was deemed a success.
The Nationals aren’t saying for certain how long Storen will be out, but sources told Ladson on Wednesday evening that the team is confident he’ll be back in the major leagues sometime before the All-Star break. Henry Rodriguez and Brad Lidge are expected to continue handling ninth-inning duties for the time being.
Storen, 24, registered a sparkling 2.75 ERA and 1.02 WHIP in 73 appearances last season, saving 43 games in 48 opportunities while fanning 74 batters across 75 1/3 innings. He’ll certainly be missed.
Chris Heisey was on the bench for the third time in six games Wednesday, but he didn’t seem to mind. He might actually be in line for more time there after delivering a pinch-hit game-winning single in the bottom of the ninth against the Cardinals.
“I can’t really explain why I’m more relaxed pinch-hitting than I am when I’m up there in a late-game situation after being a starter,” Heisey told the Cincinnati Enquirer’s Tom Groeschen. “It just seems to work better pinch-hitting, and I don’t have any reason to explain that.”
True or not, Heisey was naive to make such a comment. Words like that can cement reputations in baseball. If Heisey doesn’t have that burning desire to start, it’ll quickly become a part of his permanent record and he could find himself with limited opportunities going forward. Of course, this is just one quote taken in the afterglow of a game-winning hit and it probably doesn’t mean much. Still, he’d be smart not to advertise such thoughts again.
As for Heisey’s current situation, well, the guy he’s splitting time with, Ryan Ludwick, is off to a 1-for-11 start. Heisey deserves a shot to play regularly based on his performance as a part-timer the last two years. But if Dusty Baker thinks he’s at least as valuable off the bench as he is in the lineup, then it’s not likely to happen.