Josh Beckett is trying to make a comeback from thoracic outlet syndrome, the surgery for which ended his 2013 season in July, but now the Dodgers right-hander is dealing with a sprained thumb.
Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times described Beckett as frustratedly shaking his head while saying “this is what I’m dealing with” in regard to the new setback, which could cause him to miss Friday’s scheduled start.
And here’s the kicker: According to Hernandez the sprain occurred when “his thumb was caught in a set of doors leading into the clubhouse about 10 days ago.”
As far as pitcher injuries go that’s not as bad as, say, punching a dugout wall, but still. Beckett is owed $15.75 million in the final season of his contract at age 34.
Royals’ Opening Day starter Danny Duffy weathered a minor scare during Saturday’s Cactus League game against the Diamondbacks. The left-hander was removed from his final spring training start after experiencing some left shoulder tightness in the second and third innings. No lasting damage appears to have been done — Duffy told reporters that he simply felt a slight ache, nothing more — and it looks like he’ll remain on track to open the season with the team next Thursday.
The 29-year-old southpaw is coming off one of his best performances to date. Despite losing a few weeks to an oblique strain and elbow soreness, he went 9-10 in 24 starts and finished the 2017 season with a 3.81 ERA, 2.5 BB/9 and 8.0 SO/9 over 146 1/3 innings. While Duffy entered camp with a clean bill of health, he struggled to execute against his spring training opponents and racked up 13 runs, four homers, seven walks and 11 strikeouts in 13 innings of Cactus League play.
The Royals are scheduled to kick off their home opener against the White Sox on Thursday, March 29 at 4:15 PM ET. Barring any further complications with his shoulder, Duffy will take the mound for the Royals, while James Shields is expected to make his first Opening Day appearance for the White Sox.