Yesterday Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post noted that Ryan Zimmerman was shagging balls in left field. The Nats coaches he spoke to were cagey about it all, and Kilgore wrote a story speculating how Zimmerman might fit into left for the Nats when he returns and after Bryce Harper returns.
That was fun, but today Zimmerman put the kibosh on it:
Oh well. I would’ve liked to see Bryce Harper playing center to Zimmerman in left. And them doing the old hook-and-ladder play when someone hit one to left and it had to be fired home. But apparently that’s not in the cards.
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.