J.J. Putz takes job in Diamondbacks’ front office

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The Diamondbacks announced this evening that former closer J.J. Putz has been hired as a special assistant to president and CEO Derrick Hall. Putz, who pitched with Arizona from 2011-2014, has apparently decided to put a bow on his playing career at the age of 37. He had a 6.59 ERA in 18 appearances this season prior to being released in June.

In his new role with the Diamondbacks, Putz is expected to assist the baseball and business sides of the organization. He will be in uniform to work with pitchers during spring training and will visit with minor league affiliates at various points during the season.

Below is a statement from Hall:

“J.J.’s performance on the field and popularity off the field make him a tremendous addition to the front office,” said Hall. “His personality is a perfect fit for our culture and we are looking forward to him helping the D-backs in a number of different ways during this next phase of his career.”

Assuming this is truly the end of Putz’s playing career, he will finish with a 3.08 ERA and 189 saves. He made one All-Star team in 2007 as a member of the Mariners.

Aaron Judge has a “pretty significant strain” of his oblique

Aaron Judge
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In case you missed it over the weekend, the New York Yankees suffered yet another huge blow when another huge star went on the injured list. The star: Aaron Judge, who strained his oblique during Saturday’s 9-2 win over the Royals.

Yesterday the Yankees placed him on the injured list. In so doing, Yankees manager Aaron Boone called it a “pretty significant strain in there.” The team did not offer a timeline, but Boone said they’ll monitor Judge for a couple of weeks to see where he is. Oblique strains, however, can cause a player to miss a lot of time. Four to six weeks is not unheard of for even moderate oblique strains. Guys with major strains have missed months.

Judge is the Yankees’ 13th player currently on the injured list and is the 14th Yankees player to visit it overall on the young season. Joining him there at the moment :

It’s an All-Star team’s worth of injuries. It’s such a good group of players that Ellsbury couldn’t even make the starting lineup of the all-injured team.

Though we often ignore it in season-long narratives of successful and unsuccessful teams, choosing to focus on great or poor performances, the fact of the matter is that team health is almost always a big, big factor in who wins and who loses. No one is going to cry for the Yankees here, of course, but at some point there are just too many injuries to overcome. One has to wonder if New York has reached that point yet.