From CSNBayArea.com’s Andrew Baggarly:
Third baseman Pablo Sandoval had an MRI exam that ruled out major structural damage in his sore right elbow, and the Giants remain optimistic that their World Series MVP will start on opening day.
But Sandoval’s arm will bear watching all season, head athletic trainer Dave Groeschner said. In addition to ulnar neuritis, Sandoval has a bone spur in his elbow that appears similar to the spur that had shown up on tests since 2009.
The bone spur is not causing Sandoval any pain right now, so it doesn’t need to be surgically removed.
“Most of these guys have spurs, and he has a chronic one,” Groeschner told Baggarly on Tuesday night.
Sandoval hasn’t thrown for a couple of days and could remain in shutdown mode for the rest of this week as a precautionary measure. He played winter ball and was on Team Venezuela for the 2013 World Baseball Classic, so the Giants aren’t too worried about getting him more Cactus League at-bats. San Francisco opens its regular-season schedule on April 1 against the Dodgers. And Sandoval should be in the starting lineup.
Orioles DH Mark Trumbo drilled a two-run home run to left-center field off of reliever Ben Heller in the eighth inning of Sunday afternoon’s game against the Yankees. In doing so, he became the first player to reach the 40-homer plateau this season.
Trumbo finished 1-for-4 on the afternoon. Along with the 40 dingers, he’s hitting .257/.317/.541 with 96 RBI. He has already set a career-high in homers and is four RBI away from tying his career high in that regard.
Trumbo is eligible for free agency after the season. Needless to say, his performance in 2016 bodes well for his ability to secure a hefty contract.
Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reported on Sunday that Pirates starter Gerrit Cole was scratched from Monday’s start against the Cubs. Cole instead has flown to Los Angeles to have his sore right elbow examined by a specialist, Dr. Neal ElAttrache.
Cole struggled in Wednesday’s start against the Astros, yielding five runs in five innings. He did not throw his regular between-starts bullpen. An MRI didn’t reveal any ligament damage, but a bone spur remains a possibility.
Cole, 25, has a 3.55 ERA and a 95/32 K/BB ratio in 144 innings over 20 starts this season. The right-hander missed some time earlier this season with a triceps injury.