Rockies lose right-hander Juan Nicasio for rest of season

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This one isn’t nearly as scary as last year’s, but the Rockies have lost Juan Nicasio to a season-ending injury for the season straight campaign.

Nicasio, who missed the final two months of last year with a broken neck and fractured skull after taking a line drive to the head on Aug. 5, will miss the rest of this season following microfracture knee surgery, the Denver Post’s Troy Renck reports.

The 25-year-old Nicasio failed to pitch as hoped after an impressive spring, though considering what he went through, it’d hardly be fair to term his performance a disappointment. He was 2-3 with a 5.28 ERA in 11 starts before going on the DL with a left knee strain two months ago. Since the knee never got any better, the surgery was performed today.

The hope is that Nicasio could be ready to pitch in his native Dominican Republic come December. If healthy, he’ll have a great chance of winning a spot in Colorado’s rotation next spring.

Miguel Sano gained weight this offseason

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Not all players coming in to spring training are in The Best Shapes of Their Lives. Some have put on a few pounds, such as Miguel Sano, notes Twins GM Thad Levine:

Sano has been given medical clearance to engage in all baseball workouts with his teammates, his surgically reinforced left shin now completely healed, though the Twins intend to lighten his schedule to prevent any new injuries.

They’d like to lighten something else, too: His “generous carriage,” as General Manager Thad Levine delicately put it last week. Sano’s conditioning understandably lags, after a winter largely spent incapacitated by the surgery.

Sano’s conditioning has often been a topic of conversation among the members of the Minnesota press corps, though not always in good faith. For example, last year when Sano injured his shin by fouling a ball off of it, one member of the The Fourth Estate found a way to make a column out of blaming the freak injury on Sano’s conditioning. At least in this instance his colleague is correctly noting that the poor conditioning is a result of the injury and not the cause.

Still, it’s just another issue facing Sano this spring. He’s out of shape, coming off of an injury, and — not that he’s due any sympathy for it — he’s facing a likely suspension arising out of the allegations of sexual assault leveled against him late last year.

So this spring we’ll be seeing more of Sano, it seems. At least until that time we’ll be seeing less of him.