Lots of Roy Oswalt stuff today:
Ken Rosenthal is reporting that Oswalt threw for the Phillies and Red Sox recently. He says Oswalt is throwing for two other teams — mystery teams! — too. Jon Heyman is saying that Oswalt expects to be back in the bigs within a month. His CBS colleague Scott Miller says that he wants to pitch by June, but “only for team with good chance at World Series.”
Meanwhile, Matt Gelb of the Philly Inquirer tweeted this in response to all of that:
But … why? In response to a question from our old friend Halladay’s Biceps on Twitter, Gelb suggested that this could be Oswalt’s agent spreading baloney in an effort to drive up Oswalt’s price, saying “he has done it many times before.” Which, yes, I have heard too.
Roy Oswalt: a riddle, wrapped in an enigma, wrapped up in some camouflage pants and probably sitting in a field in Illinois or Texas or something right now, wondering where all of this noise is coming from.
MLB.com’s Jenifer Langosh reports that the Cardinals are shutting down pitcher Carlos Martínez from throwing for two weeks because his shoulder strength isn’t where it should have been at this point. Langosch added that an MRI showed no structural damage in Martínez’s right shoulder.
Interestingly, president of baseball operations John Mozeliak didn’t sound too happy with Martínez offseason training regimen. Per Mark Saxon of The Athletic, Mozeliak said, “Obviously, there’s a history with Carlos’ shoulder and it would be probably in everybody’s best interest if he maintained a constant or perpetual approach to that program.”
Martínez, 27, battled oblique and shoulder injuries last year. He accrued just 118 2/3 innings, making just 18 starts. He was moved to the bullpen when he returned from the disabled list in August and finished out the season in that role. Still, Martínez managed a 3.11 ERA with 117 strikeouts and 60 walks.
Langosch reported last week that the Cardinals were considering using Martínez in relief again in 2019. The latest news may push the Cardinals to indeed use Martínez out of the bullpen once again. He will be reevaluated in early March, but there is a chance he won’t be ready for Opening Day.