Danny Espinosa AP

Danny Espinosa is in The Best Shape Of His Life, regrets playing through injury

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We have a new member of the BSOHL club and his name is Danny Espinosa.

During an appearance at NatsFest today, Espinosa told Chase Hughes of CSNWashington.com that he hired a personal trainer this offseason and feels stronger now than he’s ever felt. However, there was an interesting quote among the typical offseason hyperbole, as Espinosa also said that he regrets playing through a broken wrist last season:

“I shouldn’t have [played]. But at the same time, I’m not the doctor reading the film. So yea, I shouldn’t have been playing on a broken wrist the whole year. Like I said, if you’re told you have a bruise, you play through a bruise. Everybody plays through bumps and bruises. I wouldn’t have played if I knew I had a broken wrist. I shouldn’t have been playing at all.”

Espinosa injured his right wrist when he was hit by a pitch in mid-April last year, but the Nationals kept putting him out there and he hit just .158/.193/.272 with three homers and a 47/4 K/BB ratio through 167 plate appearances prior to landing on the disabled list in early June. The 26-year-old returned to game action within two weeks with Triple-A Syracuse, but he struggled to the tune of a .216/.280/.286 batting line in 75 games and wasn’t recalled when rosters expanded in September.

Now that he’s apparently back to full health, Espinosa has been told by general manager Mike Rizzo and new manager Matt Williams that he’ll have a chance to win the starting second base job back during spring training. Anthony Rendon, who hit .265/.329/.396 in 98 games as a rookie last year, will obviously have something to say about that.

Matt Harrison is in The Best Shape of His Life, Part II

matt harrison getty
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Or, at the very least, good shape:

This is the second report of Harrison’s weight loss this offseason. He has a long way to go to pass Pablo Sandoval as the all-time BSOHL King, but two in one winter is pretty darn solid.

(thanks to Patrick Burns for the heads up)

CC Sabathia may or may not be in the Best Shape of His Life

CC Sabathia Getty
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Crazy pic of CC Sabathia at a wedding over the weekend:

But, before you go acting all shocked, go read Ken Rosenthal’s column, in which Sabathia tells him he really hasn’t lost a ton of weight. Rather, he’s just toning up and stuff. It’s possible our reaction to this pic may be a function of seeing Sabathia in pants that fit as opposed to his physical fitness. Dude wears gigantic uniform pants.

Either way, I’ve always remained interested in Sabathia’s fitness level. Or at least the discussion about it. A lot of people remain convinced that a little extra weight on Sabathia, especially since so much of it appears to be in his legs, is actually good for his pitching because it provides a strong base and all of that. This past season he seemed to be carrying around less bulk than usual and some have attributed his lack of effectiveness in 2013 to that.

I’m not sure any strong or informed conclusions can be drawn from any of this. And even if his weight is a factor, I feel like, as is the case with every other pitcher, arm health and fatigue and all of that factor in.  Sabathia has a lot of miles on the odometer at this point. He’s not a machine.

Matt Adams is in The Best Shape of His Life

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Matt Adams projects to open the 2014 baseball season as the Cardinals’ starting first baseman and is preparing for that role with an extensive offseason diet and workout program. Listed last year at 6-foot-3 and 260 pounds, he showed off a much more slender physique this weekend at the Cardinals’ annual Winter Warmup fan festival in downtown St. Louis.

The 25-year-old is, by all indications, in The Very Best Shape of His Life. MLB.com’s Jenifer Langosch had a chat with Adams early Sunday morning …

And Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch provides the video evidence …

Adams batted .284/.335/.503 with 17 home runs and 51 RBI in 108 games last season for the NL champs.

Kevin Gausman is in The Best Shape of His Life

Boston Red Sox v Baltimore Orioles
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Kevin Gausman of the Baltimore Orioles is 23 years-old, so if he isn’t in The Best Shape of His Life he’s doing things wrong. Still, this feature does not pass judgments. It merely chronicles history. And sketchy claims of superior, unprecedented fitness: