A couple of Saturdays back, I wrote asking what has happened to our arms: Why is it that pitchers can no longer throw as many innings as they could in previous generations?
I understand the game is different and baseball is more specialized these days, with closers and platooning. I also think my mate Todd has a valid point in noting that with hurlers tossing splitters and sliders and other pitches that cause a different torque on the arm, that is a contributor to the DL.
I remember back when the Marlins were in the post-season, back in 2003 during Dontrelle Willis' first season. I was watching a playoff game and the Train was pitching. My mother-in-law, Edie Hedgecock was spending a few days with us at the time.
Born in Romania, Edie fled the holocaust with her parents and they settled in Calcutta, India for ten years before relocating once again to La Jolla, California, which is near San Diego. I always figured that was pretty odd and if anyone deserved some culture shock slack, it was Edie.
Well, Edie is not too much into commercial sports. One time she asked me, for example, why Major League ballplayers did not high five the opposing team after a game, like they do in little league? Which might seem like a silly question on one hand, and a deep philosophical one on another.
Edie has also made her vocation as a body worker, and as she trolled through the living room where I was watching the game, she happened to see Willis delivering a pitch and exclaimed, "My goodness, does he know he is going to hurt his arm doing that?"
Prophetic words, and I guess we all knew it was going to happen, maybe even Willis himself.
Maybe that is an extreme case, and maybe it is wrong to focus on pitchers and arms for there certainly is extra stress and work that hurlers place on their bread-and-butter wing.
But, what about Brett Anderson, the uber-brittle now Rockies pitcher who is on the DL? Anderson--who was just moved to the 60-day DL--broke his finger batting, and he hurt himself hitting in the cold, not holding the bat correctly, and getting that nasty sting we have all experienced when the ball rattles the bat we possess. So, we can understand the sting and hurt, but, a broken finger that requires the insertion of pins?
Kouz came back to the Majors to spell the injured Adrian Beltre after a two-year hiatus from the Show, and was red hot, winning the AL Player of the Week prize last week. But the third sacker tweaked his back--for the zillionth time--the other day, fortuitously just as Beltre was ready to return. This once again displays the perfect Zen in baseball, as a matter of fact, with Kouz coming up to replace the injured Beltre, and now Beltre returning to spell the injured Kouzmanoff.
In addition to Trumbo and Kouzmanoff being sidelined this past week, Chris Sale, Josh Johnson (again), Jason Grilli (adding to the crazy closer merry-go-round), Scott Feldman, Wandy Rodriguez and Michael Cuddyer all went on the injury list as well.
And, about the only thing I can think of is that Sale's NL counterpart, Clayton Kershaw, went to rehab this past week after being injured himself, meaning maybe his return is imminent.
Now, I do realize ballplayers are expensive investments made by their Major League owners, and that it is good to exercise caution and protect those assets in deference to the long-term investment.
But, I have also been watching the wonderful Seth McFarlane produced retake on the old Carl Sagan Cosmos series these past weeks, and if it took us thousands of years to develop eye sight, or upright locomotion, how come our bodies suddenly have devolved into a pile of vulnerable broken up cells so quickly over the past 40 or so years?
I'm just asking?