When the Twins signed Rich Harden to a minor-league contract in December there was talk of him being relatively close to returning from the shoulder surgery that kept him out for all of 2012 and even some thought that he might be ready for Opening Day.
Six months later he still hasn’t seen any game action and Darren Wolfson of 1500ESPN.com reports that Harden is scheduled to begin a throwing program later this week. In other words, he’s basically starting from scratch again after various setbacks.
It’s possible that Harden could emerge as a late-season bullpen option in Minnesota if things go well, but given his lengthy injury history 2013 looks like another lost season for the one-time stud right-hander.
Arizona Diamondbacks right fielder Steven Souza dove for a ball in a spring training game last night, missed, and ended up injuring his right shoulder.
It looked bad, too. Center fielder Jarrod Dyson stood over him, frantically waving to the dugout for a trainer as Souza kicked his legs in apparent pain. Souza held his arms awkwardly as he walked off the field. At the moment the Dbacks are calling it a right shoulder strain, but he’ll get an MRI on it today after which a more specific diagnosis will come.
If Souza is out for a while it’s a pretty big blow to Arizona’s 2018 plan. Souza was acquired to help cushion the blow of losing J.D. Martinez in free agency. While not the hitter Martinez is, Souza hit 30 homers in Tampa Bay last year, stood likely to at least match that in the more hitter-friendly confines of Chase Field and, of course, plays superior defense.
Potential replacements for Souza include moving David Peralta from left to right and inserting Yasmany Tomas in left or having fourth outfielder Dyson, or perhaps a platoon of Dyson and utilityman Chris Owings, handle right. Socrates Brito is another internal option.
Obviously the Snakes will wait to hear the results of the MRI before going too deeply into replacement plans, all the while hoping that Souza’s injury is far less serious than it appeared to be last night.