Lost in the news of Evan Longoria’s six-year, $100 million extension is that the Rays third baseman underwent surgery last week to “clean up” his left hamstring after missing more than half of the season with a partial tear.
“With the time we had there’s no doubt that I’d be able to recover and be at 100 percent or close to by spring training,” Longoria said, via Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.
Of course, Longoria was initially expected to miss 6-8 weeks with the partially torn hamstring and ended up playing just 74 total games, so his “no doubt” might have a little doubt.
According to Topkin the surgery removed scar tissue and took place “in Texas by hamstring specialist Dr. Daniel Cooper.”
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.