Bad news for the Padres this afternoon, as Corey Brock of MLB.com reports that third baseman Chase Headley has suffered a right calf strain. Headley is using crutches as a precaution and believes that the injury will cost him a couple of weeks, but Jeff Sanders of UT-San Diego writes that more should be known following an MRI, which will likely take place on Monday.
This is the second straight year that Headley has suffered an injury during spring training, as he fractured the tip of his left thumb last March and didn’t make his season debut until April 17. The 29-year-old ended up hitting .250/.347/.400 with 13 home runs and 50 RBI over 141 games and required arthroscopic surgery on his left knee in October. He’s hoping to bounce back in his walk year, but his health isn’t doing him any favors.
The Padres traded Logan Forsythe to the Rays last month, so if Headley needs to miss the start of the season, they could go with Jedd Gyorko at third base and Alexi Amarista at second base.
Tim Tebow isn’t letting go of his major league dreams just yet. The former NFL quarterback is slated to appear with the Mets during spring training this year, extending what initially looked like an ill-fated career choice for at least one more season. Per the club’s official announcement on Friday, he’ll join a group of spring training invitees that includes top-30 prospects like Peter Alonso, P.J. Conlon, Patrick Mazeika and David Thompson.
Tebow, 30, hasn’t taken to professional baseball as gracefully as expected. He batted a cumulative .226/.309/.347 with eight home runs and a .656 OPS in 486 plate appearances for Single-A Columbia and High-A St. Lucie in 2017. While that wasn’t enough to compel the Mets to give the aging outfielder a big league tryout, there’s no denying that Tebow brought substantial benefit to their minor league affiliates — in the form of increased attendance figures and ticket sales, that is.
Even after the Mets were booted from the NL East race last September, they resisted the idea of promoting Tebow for a late-season attendance boost of their own. That’s not to say they’re planning on taking the same approach in 2018; Tebow will undoubtedly get his cup of coffee in the majors at some point, but for now, a Grapefruit League tryout is likely as close as he’ll ever get to playing with the team’s big league roster on an everyday basis.