Yadier Molina gets cast removed after thumb surgery

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Yadier Molina has already been ruled out until September following mid-July thumb surgery, but the Cardinals catcher has made enough progress to have his cast removed.

Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post Dispatch reports that Molina has now “been outfitted with several splints” and “one of them allows for increased movement.

There won’t be a timetable for his return until Molina is cleared to begin baseball-related activities, but at least he’s making progress while A.J. Pierzynski and Tony Cruz fill in for him behind the plate.

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Report: J.D. Martinez signing delayed by medical issue

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The Red Sox reportedly inked free agent outfielder J.D. Martinez to a five-year, $110 million contract last Monday, but there appears to be a slight hitch in the process. According to a report from Evan Drellich of NBC Sports Boston, the team is sorting through a medical issue that has delayed the signing. The specific nature of the issue has yet to be revealed, though Drellich adds that both the team and agent Scott Boras have involved additional medical experts in the process.

For what it’s worth, Martinez remained fairly healthy during his 2017 run with the Tigers and Diamondbacks. The 30-year-old outfielder spent six weeks on the disabled list after suffering a right foot sprain during camp, but managed to make a full recovery by mid-May and didn’t relapse once throughout the rest of the year. Of course, the medical issue holding up his new contract could be of an entirely different nature.

While spring training is already underway for the rest of the Red Sox, club manager Alex Cora doesn’t appear too concerned by Martinez’s absence — yet. “The thing I can do is my thing,” he told MLB.com’s Ian Browne. “My job here is to show up every day and get ’em ready.”