Zack Wheeler’s season ended early once again in 2017, due to a stress reaction in his right arm. He rested for a while and then began taking Forteo shots, which are normally prescribed to post menopausal women and men with osteoporosis. He will continue receiving a Forteo shot in his stomach every day for six months. It’s similar to a hormone the body makes – helps increase bone density and strength – actually builds bone. In an interview with the New York Post, Wheeler says his arm feels great and hopes to make 30 starts in 2018.
I’m just kind of tired of getting labeled as unreliable, as ‘He’s always hurt. I missed two seasons but that was because of one injury [Tommy John surgery]. I can’t help that.
I worked my butt off in rehab, was doing great and then this bone issue. I’ve thrown six bullpens and have been following Mickey and Dave’s throwing program.
My arm is feeling good, feeling strong, hopefully this will be a big year for me. I have a little chip on my shoulder and I want to battle and be in the World Series. I had no problems with my elbow last year, it was strong, my velo was there, I could flip the curve ball, throw the slider. Everything was there. Then this bone thing started sneaking up on me and kind of ruined my season.
Brad Ziegler heads to spring as the Marlins closer. Ziegler earned 10 saves last season when he took over as the team’s closer after the trade of A.J. Ramos. He had a 4.79 ERA and 4.98 K/9 Kyle Barraclough and Drew Steckenrider are waiting in the wings.
Juan Lagares went to California this offseason and worked with hitting guru Craig Wallenbrock to increase his launch angle. Wallenbrock worked with J.D. Martinez and Chris Taylor on their swings. Michael Conforto will be out at least a month, so Lagares will get plenty of time in center field.
This spring the Yankees will allow fans access to the ballpark three hours before game time rather than the normal two hours.
The @Yankees roster next year will have:
The 9 hardest HRs hit (Judge 5, Stanton 4)
The 2 longest HRs hit (Stanton 504ft, Judge 495ft)
The 21 hardest thrown pitches (Chapman)
The hardest OF assist (Hicks, 105.5 MPH)
Since @statcast inception in 2015.
— Daren Willman (@darenw) February 7, 2018
Baseball Prospectus has published PECOTA team standings for 2018. The Dodgers are projected to win 99 games and no other National League team to win more than 89.
The Mets could have a 2015 Reds reunion if they sign Brandon Phillips. They already signed Jay Bruce and Todd Frazier. Frazier is currently being ignored in drafts, but should be high on your radar if you play in OBP leagues.
Todd Frazier ranks 12th in the majors with 102 HRs since 2015. Jay Bruce is tied with Bryce Harper and Anthony Rizzo for 13th in that span with 95 HRs. The #Mets have added them both for a combined outlay of $56M this offseason.
— Jerry Crasnick (@jcrasnick) February 6, 2018
— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) February 6, 2018
The Cubs and the Astros seem to be the poster teams for tanking now to win later. Both were accused of tanking just a short time before winning a World Series.
Theo Epstein wanted to draft Mark Appel second overall in 2013, but had to settle for Kris Bryant instead since the Astros drafted him first overall. Appel is 26 now and after six years, has yet to pitch in a major-league game. On Feb. 1, he announced that he is taking an ‘indefinite break’ from baseball.
Yu Darvish signing with the Cubs is not cool for the Brewers, who also offered Darvish around $100 million. They will still look to add another starting pitcher as the Brewers current rotation looks something like this:
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