Cody Ross suffers calf injury in Cactus League game

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Late-spring injuries are the worst.

According to Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News, Giants outfielder Cody Ross was lifted from the club’s Cactus League tilt with the Angels Wednesday due to a right calf strain.

Ross was attempting to make a catch on a shallow line drive when he pulled up lame. He struggled to get off the field on his own and was later spotted riding to the clubhouse in a golf cart.

The Giants are likely to provide an update on his status Thursday after they give him a round of tests. Calf strains can range from very minor to very serious, so it’s possible that San Francisco will be forced to place him on the 15-day disabled list before the start of the season. And it’s also possible that he’s fine.

Ross, 30, posted a weak .735 OPS during the 2010 regular season but his bat came alive in October and he helped the Giants to the World Series title with a five-homer and 10-RBI postseason outburst. He is expected to start in right field on most days and nights this summer for San Francisco.

Zack Cozart thinks the way the Rays have been using Sergio Romo is bad for baseball

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The Rays started Sergio Romo on back-to-back days and if that sounds weird to you, you’re not alone. Romo, of course, was the star closer for the Giants for a while, helping them win the World Series in 2012 and ’14. He’s been a full-time reliever dating back to 2006, when he was at Single-A.

In an effort to prevent lefty Ryan Yarbrough from facing the righty-heavy top of the Angels’ lineup (Zack Cozart, Mike Trout, Justin Upton), Romo started Saturday’s game, pitching the first inning before giving way to Yarbrough in the second. Romo struck out the side, in fact. The Rays went on to win 5-3.

The Rays did it again on Sunday afternoon, starting Romo. This time, he got four outs before giving way to Matt Andriese. Romo walked two without giving up a hit while striking out three. The Angels managed to win 5-2 however.

Despite Sunday’s win, Cozart wasn’t a happy camper with the way the Rays used Romo. Via Fabian Ardaya of The Athletic, Cozart said, “It was weird … It’s bad for baseball, in my opinion … It’s spring training. That’s the best way to explain it.”

It’s difficult to see merit in Cozart’s argument. It’s not like the Rays were making excessive amounts of pitching changes; they used five on Saturday and four on Sunday. The games lasted three hours and three hours, 15 minutes, respectively. The average game time is exactly three hours so far this season. I’m having trouble wondering how else Cozart might mean the strategy is bad for baseball.

It seems like the real issue is that Cozart is afraid of the sport changing around him. The Rays, like most small market teams, have to find their edges in slight ways. The Rays aren’t doing this blindly; the strategy makes sense based on their opponents’ starting lineup. The idea of valuing on-base percentage was scoffed at. Shifting was scoffed at and now every team employs them to some degree. Who knows if starting a reliever for the first three or four outs will become a trend, but it’s shortsighted to write it off at first glance.