The twins must be breathing a sigh of relief, announcing to reporters Thursday that MR has revealed a right-hander Tyler Mahlethe shoulder of being structurally sound. Mahle, acquired by the Reds in exchange for three prospects earlier this month, exited yesterday’s start after just 2 1/3 innings due to shoulder fatigue. That was of particular concern because he also missed time in July with what the Reds called a “minor” shoulder strain. For now, there are no plans to place Mahle on the 15-day injured list, although it’s not yet clear if his next start will be pushed back at all.
Mahle’s start Wednesday saw his fastball come in about four miles per hour shy of his typical 93.4 mph average, so there’s still an obvious concern, but the absence of a tear or any structural issues is about the best news the Twins could have. to hope . In 14 1/3 innings as a Twin, Mahle pitched to a 2.51 ERA with a 23.1% strikeout rate and a 7.7% walk rate. Mahle, Sonny Gray, Joe Ryan, Chris Archer and Dylan Bundy is in line to make the majority of the Twins’ starts down the stretch, although they wait to the right Bailey Ober back in September and just this week promoted a prospect Simeon Woods Richardson from Double-A to Triple-A.
A few more injury scenarios worth noting from around the league…
- As if things couldn’t get any worse for the Tigersmanager AJ Hinch announced this week that outfielder Austin Meadows was again pulled from a rehab assignment (link via Chris McCosky of the Detroit News). Meadows first hit the injured list in mid-May due to vertigo symptoms and returned just under a month later. That comeback lasted only eight games, however, before he was placed on the injured list related to Covid. Just as Meadows was preparing to go out for a rehab assignment, he was moved to the 10-day injured list due to the bizarre diagnosis of an Achilles strain in both legs This now marks the second time Meadows has had a rehab assignment for this injury put on hold. The only update from Hinch was that Meadows was headed to Detroit for re-evaluation and that the Tigers still have hope he can return in 2022. It’s been a nightmare of a season for Meadows, who has been limited to just 147 plate appearances and seen his power to disappear: .250/.347/.328.
- Mets rightly so Taijuan Walker left his most recent start because of back spasms, with an MRI revealing a small disc bulge in his lower back, reports . Anthony DiComo of MLB.com. However, it’s possible he could make his next scheduled start on Sunday. Walker tells DiComo that he is “shocked” to feel so good so soon after experiencing “the worst pain I’ve ever felt.” Even though he’s feeling better, he still won’t take the mound on Sunday unless he feels 100 percent, via DiComo. If he is indeed reinstated, it would be a huge gift for the Mets, given the current pressures on their rotation. With Carlos Carrasco recently landing on the IL and the Mets having a doubleheader on Saturday, having to get through Sunday without Walker would certainly be a challenge. How his back responds over the next few days will determine whether the club can avoid that difficult scenario.
- fathers return Pierce Johnson goes out on a rehab assignment, tweets Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune. Johnson had a great season for San Diego a year ago, throwing 58 2/3 innings with a 3.22 ERA and a 31.6% strikeout rate. The Friars held a $3MM club option on Johnson’s services for this year, which they exercised based on that strong showing last season. Unfortunately, Johnson landed on the IL in April due to elbow tendinitis. He has yet to return, meaning he has only been able to get into six games this year. After being sidelined for about four months, it looks like he’s healthy enough to get back into game shape. Once he’s ready to return to the big league club, he should give the bullpen a boost for the final few weeks of the season.