A few things out there worth noting this afternoon:
- David Lennon of New York Newsday (click here for the post) is reporting that while last night’s start was good, there is still reason for concern surrounding John Maine. Maine was said to still feel a “little sore”, with his fastball “down to 91-93 mph rather than his usual 96”, according to Lennon. Lennon also said that Maine’s strained rotator-cuff “must be managed, with treatment and exercises”. It is expected that we know a little more tomorrow, so who knows. You may want to hold off on using him given this news, but he is, at least at this point, in line for a 2-start week next week. It’s a high risk/high reward proposition.
- For an organization with so much depth at catcher, the Rangers are unusually thin there right now. According to Jeff Willson of The Star-Telegram (click here for the article), both Gerald Laird and Jarrod Saltalamacchia are currently hurting. Laird is suffering from “back spasms just below his right shoulder blade”, but is probably going to play tomorrow. Saltalamacchia “been playing with a fracture in his right foot for the past week”, though it appears he’ll be able to continue playing, at least for now. Their top two minor leaguers, Taylor Teagarden (Olympics) and Max Ramirez (DL) are both unavailable. I certainly wouldn’t be using Saltalamacchia at this point. Laird, it really depends on your format, but if he’s going to be in the line-up, he has to be in if your league requires 2 catchers.
- Troy E. Renck of The Denver Post (click here for the post) is reporting that Aaron Cook could take the mound on Sunday for the Rockies, after having “no problems with his previously stiff back” after a side session. Given his performance of late, I’d be skeptical of using him until he’s back to form.
- Renck is also reporting that Garrett Atkins is back with the team, though he is not in today’s line-up, after missing a few days with strep throat. He should be back anyday now at this point.
- Could Hideki Matsui be closing in on a return? It would appear so, as Mark Feinsand of The New York Daily News (click here for the article) is reporting that he is set to begin a rehab assignment today. There was no word as to how long the rehab could last, so I wouldn’t go crazy quite yet, but this certainly is an encouraging sign.
- In the same article, Feinsand says that Dan Giese “will have his shoulder checked out today” after being forced out of his last start with soreness. If he is forced to miss time, there is a chance Phil Hughes gets the nod in his absence. Time will tell, but Hughes gives the team a better chance in general, so if he’s healthy, he should be in there. Hughes is certainly worth a flyer right now.