Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Where in the World is Freddy Garcia?

Jason Beck's blog reports that Freddy Garcia is not yet pitching in winter ball in Venezuela, but hopes to be by early November.  Wowee.  This is a bit of a set-back.  I hadn't realized the neck/shoulder injury from the Chicago make-up game was as serious as all this.  It makes it harder to evaluate him in my view, even though Beck thought clubs wouldn't be too put off by it, if it's a short delay.

It just goes to show how tenuous a pitcher's career is.  Not to over-react, but it seems a common problem that pitchers come back too quickly from injury, only to re-aggravate the existing injury, or cause an entirely new one due to compensating, favoring, tweaking mechanics to deal with the original injury, coming back before full arm strength is there, pitching too long too early on, etc.  I feel badly for those whose arms are burnt up before their time-- careers being cut short all tragically.  At the same time, there seems to be such a cowboy mentality out there.  Why in tarnation did Bonderman not disclose his injury earlier?  He was getting roasted alive for his nauseating performances, yet says nothing?  Come on! (Side note, Bonderman's a head case anyway, so maybe this was just more of the same bewildering psychological drama for him--like giving up three runs every first inning.)

Then we hear from Leyland about how everyone has been re-educated to report injuries immediately--to no apparent effect.   We've got Zumaya out there all jacked up, Kenny Rogers battling hip trouble, but not admitting to it, Garcia going out there trying to be a hero, laudably in some ways, trying to show his worth for next year, trying to stick it to the Sox, but ends up jeopardizing everything instead.

People, could we please not destroy our bodies and our ballclubs by reporting injuries early on, so you can maybe spend one short stint on the stinking DL instead of half the season or worse?  I mean, do you see the logic, ballplayers?  Or am I just such a non-athlete that I don't get some code of stoic, stubborn, misplaced pride?  Perhaps they fear being labeled not-durable, weak, injury-prone, but to me, if you're out there getting hammered every night anyway, it's so beyond not worth it.

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