No Nike

Laynce Nix blames Nike for last year’s injury woes

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The Phillies signed Laynce Nix to a two-year deal before last season. Season one didn’t work out that well due to Nix suffering a number of maladies, specifically with his calf. Dennis Deitch of the DelCo Times reports that Nix thinks he has figured out the cause of those woes: Nike:

“To be short and direct,” Nix said Wednesday, “the shoes that I was wearing didn’t flex where my toes flex, and it caused tension in the Achilles’ [tendon] and calves. That built up for a couple of years in my Achilles and calves … [Jimmy Rollins and Shane Victorino] had [calf issues] too, and had worn Nikes before,” Nix said. “Certain shoes that Nike makes just don’t do that (offer toe flex), and it’s really shocking.”

He thinks injuries to Mark Teixeira and Albert Pujols are attributable to Nikes too.

So what’s he wearing now?

“I’m switching up,” Nix said. “I’ve been going between Mizuno, New Balance and Adidas. I’m shopping around.”

No love for L.A. Gear or Kangaroos? Shameful.

Oh well. I guess all there is to do now is to wait for Phil Knight’s hit squads to take Nix out.  That’s how it works, right?

Josh Johnson retires from baseball

PEORIA, AZ - FEBRUARY 21: Josh Johnson #55 of the San Diego Padres poses during Picture Day on February 21, 2014 at the Peoria Sports Complex in Peoria, Arizona. (Photo by Mike McGinnis/Getty Images)
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Oft-injured pitcher Josh Johnson is retiring from baseball, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick is reporting.

Johnson, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2013. The right-hander underwent his third Tommy John surgery in September 2015 but wasn’t able to bounce back.

Johnson spent most of his career with the Marlins, but also pitched for the Blue Jays in the big leagues, as well as the Padres in the minors. He retires with a career 3.40 ERA, 915 strikeouts across 998 innings in the majors, and two All-Star nominations. Johnson led the National League with a 2.30 ERA in 2010, finishing fifth in NL Cy Young Award balloting. One wonders what he could have accomplished if he was able to stay healthy.

Report: Angels close to a multi-year deal with Luis Valbuena

HOUSTON, TX - JULY 08:  Luis Valbuena #18 of the Houston Astros hits a three run walkoff home run in the ninth inning to defeat the Oakland Athletics 10-9 at Minute Maid Park on July 8, 2016 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
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The Angels are nearing a multi-year deal with free agent third baseman Luis Valbuena, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. It’s believed to be a two-year contract with a third-year option.

Valbuena, 31, hit .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances in 2016. He missed most of the second half with a hamstring injury, for which he underwent surgery in late August.

Valbuena has played a majority of his career at third base, but also has extensive experience at second base and has racked up innings at first base and shortstop as well. He won’t play every day for the Angels, as Yunel Escobar lays claim to third base and C.J. Cron first base, but he will give them flexibility and a left-handed bat off the bench.