Reds closer Ryan Madson has yet to make an appearance in a Cactus League game this spring because of discomfort in his throwing elbow.
And he’s unlikely to debut anytime soon.
According to John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer, Madson was scratched from a scheduled appearance Thursday in a minor league exhibition game with what sounds like renewed elbow issues.
“I don’t know what I can say,” Madson told the Enquirer on Thursday evening in Reds camp. “I don’t like to be like that, but…”
“We’re sorting it out,” general manager Walt Jocketty added. “We’ll let you know.”
Madson signed a one-year, $8.5 million free agent contract with the Reds this winter. If he is unavailable for the start of the regular season, Reds skipper Dusty Baker will likely ask Sean Marshall to act as closer.
Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that the Diamondbacks and reliever T.J. McFarland have avoided arbitration, agreeing on a $1.45 million salary for the 2019 season. McFarland, in his third of four years of arbitration eligibility, filed for $1.675 million while the Diamondbacks countered at $1.275 million. McFarland ended up settling for just under the midpoint of those two figures.
McFarland, 29, was terrific out of the bullpen for the D-Backs last season, finishing with a 2.00 ERA and a 42/22 K/BB ratio in 72 innings. While the lefty may not miss a lot of bats, he does induce quite a few grounders. His 67.9 percent ground ball rate last season was the third highest among relievers with at least 50 innings, trailing only Brad Ziegler (71.1%) and Scott Alexander (70.6%).
McFarland was dominant against left-handed hitters, limiting them to a .388 OPS last season, but the D-Backs deployed him nearly twice as often against right-handed hitters, who posted an aggregate .764 OPS against him. It will be interesting to see if the club decides to use him more as a platoon reliever in 2019.