I had no idea dudes swung the bat with the knob in the palm of their hands

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From Oakland, we learn that Yoenis Cespedes is trying out a new grip when he returns:

Céspedes said Wednesday morning that he no longer will grip the bat with the knob nestled in the palm of his hand. There is thought that holding the knob in the palm might have contributed to the strained hand muscle that put him on the DL this month.

Through interpreter Ariel Prieto, Céspedes said he does not know if gripping the bat that way caused his injury. He always has held the bat with the knob in his palm.

And apparently Pablo Sandoval did too, which some believe is what has contributed to his injuries.

I just find it really weird that anyone swings the bat like that.  Seriously, if you have a wooden bat around, try it. It hurts! And I presume people like you and me generate one eight billionth of the force and speed with our swings that a major leaguer can. The palm has to hurt, as does the top wrist, which is taking more of the brunt of things.

Oh well. Learn something new about this game every day.

Will Middlebrooks carted off field with injury

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Phillies third baseman Will Middlebrooks suffered a serious injury during Saturday’s Grapefruit League contest against the Orioles. The infielder was chasing down a pop fly in the eighth inning when he ran into left fielder Andrew Pullin, who inadvertently trapped Middlebrooks’ ankle under his leg. Middlebrooks was unable to put weight on his leg following the collision and was carted off the field and taken to a local hospital for X-rays.

Per MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki, not much is known yet about the severity of the ankle injury or the recovery time it will require, though it appears serious enough to set Middlebrooks back considerably as he seeks a backup/bench role with the team this spring.

The 29-year-old is currently seeking another opportunity to extend his six-year major-league career in 2018. He’s coming off of two down years with the Brewers and Rangers, during which he slashed a cumulative .169/.229/.262 with four extra bases through 70 plate appearances.