I'm on my way back from Arizona this morning after a brief, but swell, Spring Training visit. The latest from around the League...
- New York Yankees' pitcher Joba Chamberlain, who was already recovering from Tommy John surgery, is now recovering from a gruesome late-week trampoline accident that left him with a dislocated ankle (of the "holy crap, that thing is sticking out of your skin" variety) and a whole lot of blood loss. He was in the hospital for several days, but things are now looking good. Recovery for the ankle injury will have Chamberlain in a cast for six weeks, and a walking boot after that. The most optimistic timeline has him throwing again this Summer. He's gotten some grief for the injury, which he suffered while playing with his kid. I agree, generally, with the sentiment that profesional athletes have a duty to their employers to be extra cautious with their bodies. But, like, come on. The guy was playing with his kid. There are much worse things he could have been doing.
- It was a Tommy John kind of weekend for closers, as both the Kansas City Royals' Joakim Soria, and the Cincinnati Reds' Ryan Madson will require ligament replacement surgery in their elbows. Each team will look to replace their closer internally. The Madson injury is a particular kick in the crotch, as the Reds had just signed him to a one-year, $8.5 million deal on which they took no insurance.
- Another pitcher injury bit, since that's clearly the theme: Chris Carpenter is now out "indefinitely" with nerve irritation that is weakening his shoulder. Recall, shoulder problems several years ago almost ended Carpenter's career before he'd become the star pitcher he's been with the Cardinals.
- The season is saved for 29 MLB teams: Koyie Hill is now a free agent, after being released by the Cardinals. Act fast, folks.
- Beyond the Box Score takes a look - as in, an actual, visual look - at the Los Angeles Angels' window of competitiveness. It won't shock you to learn that, particularly in light of the Albert Pujols and CJ Wilson deals, the Angels' window is best over the next few years.
- Neither the Yankees nor Michael Pineda are concerned about his reduced velocity this Spring. He's still getting good results, but, given that the Yankees gave up prized prospect Jesus Montero in a deal for Pineda, you could understand why there might be a few fingers placed inside New York collars, tugging gently.