Is Jose Bautista asking for ump trouble?

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This story in the National Post about Jose Bautista arguing with umpires over the strike zone is interesting. Here’s a quote he gave Tuesday night after feeling like he got screwed on a couple ball/strike calls:

“Sometimes I have trouble more than other players dealing with my production being affected by somebody else’s mediocrity,” he said. “It’s just the way I am as a person. It’s a tougher pill to swallow for me sometimes.”

Buster Olney, in linking this story on Twitter this morning, had this to say:

 

We all know umpiring can be … erratic. But sometimes there’s a price to be paid for being correct in your criticism of authority, especially if it’s couched in the kind of “we all know those guys are awful” way Bautista couched it.  Even if the evidence points out that Bautista is being unequivocally boned at the plate, I’m not sure what he accomplishes by calling out the men in blue like this.

Cardinals shut down Carlos Martínez for two weeks due to shoulder issue

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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.