Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: June 16, 2021 by Sports Time Radio in sports

Now it’s no surprise that there are a lot of pitchers speaking out against this new rule Major League Baseball is going to start enforcing about putting foreign substances on the baseball. It was announced that any pitcher caught doing this would face a 10-day suspension.

Now Tyler Glasnow of the Tampa Bay Rays was injured in his last start and he pointed to the fact that Major League Baseball is instituting this rule and he had to change the way he approached his start. Glasnow talked about using sunscreen and rosin on the baseball to get a better grip and there seems to be a lot of talk about how a lot of pitcher use these two substances on the baseball to help with their grip as well.

Glasnow was having a great season and had to be considered one of the leading Cy Young candidates in the American League. Glasnow has made 14 starts covering 88 innings. He is 5-2 with an ERA of 2.66 and has struck out 123 batters while walking just 27.

Glasnow came out of his start on Monday against the Chicago White Sox after just 4 innings and it was announced yesterday that Glasnow has a with a partially torn UCL and a flexor tendon strain. Tampa Bay has placed him on the 10-day IL and there hasn’t been any kind of timetable about a possible return this season. Glasnow himself did say that he’s hoping to avoid surgery by strengthening the area around the injury.

Now if you haven’t been paying attention the Rays actually have the best record in Major League Baseball right now at 43-25. That record puts them two games ahead of the Boston Red Sox for 1st place in the American League East. Of course will now have to see how Glasnow’s injury affect the Rays.

It looks like Tampa Bay will go with Ryan Yarbrough, Rich Hill, Michael Wacha and Shane McClanahan as the first four in their starting rotation, but where they go with that fifth spot is up in the air. Now Josh Fleming, Colin McHugh and Luis Patino have made starts for the Rays this season, but you have to wonder if it might be time for them to let top prospect Brent Honeywell Jr. fill Glasnow’s spot in the starting rotation and take a regular turn at the big league level.

Now Honeywell Jr. has made three appearances this season with two of them being starts and has had some issues, but you wonder if allowing him to take a turn in the starting rotation regularly would help him relax and find his place. Honeywell Jr. has only pitched 4 1/3rd innings in his three appearances this season and his ERA 8.31, but in the minor leagues this season his ERA is just 2.38. The issue may be that Honeywell Jr. has made 8 appearances at Triple-A this season, but only one of them has been a start. Of course throughout the rest of his minor league career he’s been a starter.

Glasnow’s spot in the Rays rotation is due to come up again on Friday when they face the Seattle Mariners, but Tampa Bay has yet to make an announcement on who will be the starting pitcher in that game. I don’t think it would surprise anyone if they just had a bullpen day for Glasnow’s first missed start to give them a little more time to make a decision.

Now Glasnow isn’t the only top starting pitcher to hit the IL recently. The Washington Nationals announced yesterday that Max Scherzer had been placed on the IL retroactive to June 12th with what was described as groin inflammation.

Now the Nationals have had their issues this season and are currently in last place in the National League East, but the division is so close that they find themselves just 6 or 7 games from 1st place.

Scherzer was forced out of his start on Friday night in the first inning with the groin issue. He downplayed the injury after his start, but he’ll apparently still need some time on the IL to recover. The team didn’t announce an initial timetable for his return.

Scherzer has made 13 starts for the Nationals this season covering 77 1/3rd innings. He is just 5-4 in those 13 starts, but has an ERA of 2.21; so it doesn’t appear as though he’s getting much run support. Scherzer has walked just 15 batters this season while striking out 104.

With no timetable for his return it makes things interesting with what might happen to Scherzer. He is in the last year of his contract and even though he turns 37 years old in July you’d have to expect he’ll be a very popular free agent. If the Nationals continue to struggle is it possible that they might consider trading Scherzer and look forward to next season. Then if they do deal Scherzer would they attempt to bring him back as a free agent this coming off season.

Scherzer is in his seventh season with the Nationals and he has won two Cy Young awards with them and of course he was a huge part of their 2019 World Series winner.

Scherzer is a Scott Boras client, but so was Steven Strasburg and the Nationals where able to get him signed before he went into free agency. Is it possible that they could do the same thing with Scherzer or will we see him dealt and then they’ll try to bring him back. I guess will have to see where the Nationals are in the standings when Scherzer returns.

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You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

  1. I find it quite strange that Ray’s ace pitcher is blaming MLB for his latest injury because of their cracking down on substances that pitchers have been using.
    There have been many instances of pitchers using illegal substances over the years. I mentioned that during a Cub game many years ago, the Cubs ace reliever, Phil Regan struck out Pete Rose who promptly complained to the home plate umpire. After checking Regan’s cap, he rescinded the strikeout call and get another at bat to Rose who promptly singled into right field.
    It was hot and humid that day and the Cub’s SS, Don Kessinger pointed out to the umpire that his hat was sweaty also. The first and only time I’ve ever seen an umpire do that.
    There was a baseball movie a number of years ago, It Happens Every Spring, with Ray Milland. He’s a college professor that invents a wood repellant and he uses it in games to strike out all the batters. Talk about an illegal substance!


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