Hamstring, not knee, forces Victor Martinez out of game

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Victor Martinez (and his many knee injuries) gave Tigers fans a scare when he exited today’s game clutching his left leg while running the bases, but the 38-year-old designated hitter has been diagnosed with a strained hamstring.

While not exactly good news that qualifies as positive news in that hamstring injuries heal in weeks rather than months and Martinez’s surgically repaired knee remains intact.

For now the Tigers are calling it a mild strain, but given Martinez’s age and overall health they figure to be pretty conservative with his recovery timetable even if things go well.

After a career-best 2014 season that saw him finish runner-up in the MVP voting and get a new four-year, $68 million contract Martinez struggled mightily last year, hitting .245 with 11 homers and a career-worst .667 OPS while dealing with knee problems throughout.

Report: Joe Girardi waiting for opening with Cubs

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Fancred’s Jon Heyman reports that former Yankees manager Joe Girardi took himself out of the running for the Reds’ and Rangers’ managerial openings. The “industry speculation” is that Girardi is waiting a year for a potential opening to manage the Cubs.

Current Cubs manager Joe Maddon has one more year left on his contract. While the Cubs have played quite well under his tenure, the front office and Maddon haven’t had any discussions about an extension, which means 2019 might be his final year with the club. Under Maddon’s leadership since 2015, the Cubs won the championship in 2016 and compiled a 387-261 (.597) record during the regular season.

Girardi, 54, spent his first four seasons in the majors with the Cubs and another three towards the end of his career. He managed the Marlins for one year in 2006, then managed the Yankees from 2008-17, leading them to a World Series in ’09 and an overall regular season record of 910-710 (.562).