Baseball Injury Reportby Rick Wilton
September 26, 2006
Featured Note of the Week
Matt Morris (RHP, SF)
After posting a decent 4.29 ERA and 1.34 WHIP Ratio in the first half of the season, it looked like Morris had found a new home in the Bay Area. However, the second half of the season, especially in September, has been a disaster. This month his ERA is 9.27, ratio 2.01, and he has a walk-to-strikeout ratio of only 1.00. Just five starts ago, Morris was throwing a complete game three-hitter against the Reds. Then the roof started to cave in. What is wrong?
There aren't any reports of elbow or shoulder problems. He hasn't had any high-pitch games that would cause this recent slide either. When pitchers post numbers this bad, even over a short period of time, you have to wonder if he has a hidden injury. If his struggles continue in his next couple of starts, it would only support this theory.
From Injury Watch Notes This Past Week
Francisco Liriano (LHP, MIN)
Liriano was seen by Dr. James Andrews in Birmingham, Alabama last Monday. The Twins were looking for a second opinion regarding his pitching elbow. Andrews concurs with the Twins medical staff. Liriano does not have any new damage to the ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) in his left elbow. The damage done to the ligament is an old injury, though there is no way of knowing how old it is.
He is now beginning a regain program for the next 10 days, and then he’ll be re-evaluated. If he still has some discomfort in the elbow, he’ll likely undergo exploratory arthroscopic surgery on his left elbow. Once the elbow is open, the surgeon would know whether he needs to have reconstruction surgery or something a lot less serious.
As we learned from Eric Gagne, just because you are scheduled for Tommy John surgery doesn’t mean that is the surgery you will have. As valuable as CT scans, MRIs and X-rays are, they are not perfect. We should have a good idea about his 2007 season once this 10-day period is over and the surgery question is answered.
Ken Griffey Jr. (OF, CIN)
It's beginning to sound like Junior won’t be back this season, especially with the Reds out of the postseason hunt. The dislocated toe in his right foot is healing slowly, and he still feels soreness anytime he tries to push off the foot. Cincinnati is down to 12 games left in the season, and by the sound of it, he doesn’t appear motivated to push his recovery just to get back for a game or so. Note that last season he missed the final 26 games due to a sprained right foot.
Jason Giambi (1B, NYY)
Giambi has received two cortisone injections in his left wrist the past three weeks. While they have reduced the discomfort a little bit, they haven't helped his production. In the first half of the season, he was hitting a home run once in every 9.8 at-bats. In the second half that number has risen to 18.7, and in 41 September at-bats he’s yet to hit a home run. Look for the Yankees to rest him as much as possible the last 10 days or so of the season to help regain the strength in his left wrist in time for the postseason.
Coco Crisp (OF, BOS)
Crisp’s season is over after the Red Sox, and Crisp decided he'd better have surgery on his left index finger. Crisp originally hurt the finger at the start of the season when he suffered a non-displaced fracture. Over the course of the season, the wear and tear on the finger has caused the bones to separate, causing him more pain. Unless there are complications, Crisp will be ready for the start of Spring Training.
Rick Wilton is the Publisher of the Baseball Injury Report website, the foremost authority on injuries for fantasy baseball owners. He also published the first of its kind Baseball Injury Annual this spring.
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