More details on Dan Uggla’s concussion symptoms

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We learned last week that second baseman Dan Uggla played through the 2014 season with an undiagnosed concussion. Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe provided more details about how the concussion affected Uggla.

Uggla had trouble picking up the rotation on the ball, so he decided to get Lasik eye surgery. He had 20/15 vision. Doctors, however, found that when Uggla moved his head or body, his vision deteriorated to 20/100 — known as oculomotor dysfunction. This both explains his poor performance at the plate and his poor defense in the field.

The Nationals signed Uggla to a minor league contract on the day after Christmas. The second baseman, who turns 35 in March, will try to rebound from an aggregate .617 OPS in 694 at-bats since the start of the 2013 season. He’ll battle Danny Espinosa for the Nationals’ second base job.

Astros greeted with boos in first spring training game

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The Astros and Nationals share a spring training facility, so it was only natural that they would open Grapefruit League play together. The Astros were the home team. Here’s the lineup they rolled out.

Teams typically include at least a few regulars in their spring training lineups as a courtesy to the fans, who are spending money to see big league players play baseball. This is especially the case for home games. However, the Astros have decided to roll out a lineup with a combined 323 MLB plate appearances.

There might be a reason for that. Houston was lustily booed as they took the field. This was after running a video on the scoreboard celebrating their 2019 AL championship.

That’s all with the team that beat them in the World Series (and is widely regarded as baseball’s current heroes for beating the big bad cheating Astros) in the other dugout, of course. Nationals starter Max Scherzer has not thrown at any Houston player, and the game is now in a rain delay. But it seems like the Astros decided to spare their players from some possible rough treatment, both from fans and opposing pitchers.

The same could not be said for Astros mascot Orbit, who was also booed.

One can quibble with the merits of booing a bunch of players who have barely touched the big leagues because you’re mad at Jose Altuve and Alex Bregman, but sports fandom is something of an irrational business. Fans are going to want their pound of flesh, especially when they paid for the right to be in the ballpark and give the Astros a piece of their mind. Some of them even brought props! This is just how it all works, unfortunately. If you’re in an Astros uniform, you’re probably going to get booed.

Welcome to the 2020 season, Astros. It’s probably going to be like this all year.

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