After playing through a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his left thumb for nearly the entire season, Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia expects to have surgery to address the injury “probably in the next couple of weeks.” He made the announcement during an appearance on WEEI’s “Salk & Holley” show yesterday.
Pedroia suffered the injury diving into first base on Opening Day, but ended up playing in 160 regular season games and 16 playoff games. While he finished with nine home runs — his lowest power output since his rookie season in 2007 — he still posted an outstanding .301/.372/.415 batting line.
Pedroia will undergo an MRI before surgery is finalized. He should have plenty of time to heal before the Red Sox attempt to defend their crown in 2014.
Jake Arrieta‘s bat is in midseason form already. The Cubs’ ace swatted a solo home run to center field off of Zack Greinke in Thursday afternoon’s Grapefruit League exhibition game, his first homer of the spring.
The blast went 465 feet, according to MLB.com’s Daren Willman.
Arrieta has hit two home runs in each of the past two seasons. Madison Bumgarner (eight) and Noah Syndergaard (four) are the only other pitchers to match or exceed his output in that department.
Greinke, meanwhile, is hoping to bounce back after a miserable 2016 season. He finished with an uncharacteristic 4.37 ERA in 26 starts in his first year with the Diamondbacks.
Angels first baseman Luis Valbuena will miss the next four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.
Valbuena, 31, signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Angels in January and was on track to get the lion’s share of the playing time at first base. While he’s out, however, C.J. Cron will handle first base on a regular basis. When Valbeuna returns, the two will likely form a platoon.
Last year with the Astros, Valbuena hit a solid .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances.