Grady Sizemore to get second opinion on right knee

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Grady Sizemore was shut down for the rest of the season over the weekend. And while the Indians initially described the decision as a precautionary measure, today’s update from team trainer Lonnie Soloff is somewhat concerning.

According to the Associated Press, Sizemore will have his right knee examined by Dr. Richard Steadman on Monday in Colorado. This is significant because Steadman is the same doctor who performed microfracture surgery on Sizemore’s left knee in June of last year.

“I think we’re going out there just to get another opinion on his knee,” Indians trainer Lonnie Soloff said. “What course of action puts Grady in the best possible position to play and perform next year?”

“We’re going out there just with Grady’s best interests in mind, short-term and long-term,” Soloff said. “I think we’re open to (Steadman’s) assessment and his recommendation. … I think that his expertise is what you seek.”

Sizemore was limited to just 71 games this season, batting .224/.285/.422 with 10 home runs, 32 RBI, zero stolen bases and a .706 OPS over 295 plate appearances. The 29-year-old center fielder didn’t make his season debut until mid-April following surgery and then suffered a bone bruise in his right knee and a sports hernia on a slide into second base in May. He served three separate stints on the disabled list this season.

Sizemore is in the final guaranteed year of a six-year, $23.45 million contract. The Indians will soon have to make a decision about whether to pick up his $8.5 million option for 2012 or pay a $500,000 buyout, which will make him a free agent for the first time in his career.

Cardinals tab Miles Mikolas for Opening Day start

Miles Mikolas
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The Cardinals have selected right-hander Miles Mikolas as their Opening Day starter, the club revealed Saturday. It’ll mark the first career Opening Day start for Mikolas, who is scheduled to go up against the Brewers when the team hits the road on March 28.

The 29-year-old righty was a strong contender for the 2018 NL Cy Young Award, earning All-Star distinctions and pitching to a career-best 18-4 record with a 2.83 ERA, 1.3 BB/9, 6.5 SO/9, and 4.3 fWAR over 200 2/3 innings. He’s positioned to lead the Cardinals rotation in 2019 as well, with former Opening Day starters Carlos Martínez and Adam Wainwright and some combination of right-handers Jack Flaherty, Michael Wacha, Alex Reyes, and John Gant behind him.

Manager Mike Shildt told reporters that Flaherty, Wacha, Wainwright, and Martínez had all been considered for the honor, but admitted that Opening Day honors were ultimately handed to Mikolas “in recognition of [his performance] last year.” The Cardinals are scheduled to play a four-game set against the Brewers to start the season and will stop over in Pittsburgh for another two games before returning to St. Louis for their opening homestand against the Padres on April 4. Additional pitching assignments have yet to be announced.