With nothing except practice to be gained from playing now, Andy Dirks has missed a second straight preseason game with an intercostal strain. Yes, that condition sounds more like a weather event or a cute name used to describe a beach community’s economic hardship, but, I assure you, I’ve consulted the Internet and intercostal strain appears to be a real thing. I’m 99% sure Dirks isn’t faking this to get out of playing baseball.
We’re still in spring training, so there should be no rush for Dirks to return. Winning exhibition games is about as important to the Detroit Tigers as fashion sense is to the world’s fattest man.
Contingency plans are in place. If Dirks can’t go, and this injury takes more time to heal than anticipated, look for the speedy Quintin Berry or, if he’s healthy, Brennan Boesch to fill in for Dirks in left field. Dirks in the lineup is definitely the preferred option it seems, but sometimes, I mean, when they’re out of McNuggets a Big Mac or a bucket of fries can get the job done too, you know?
Some have speculated that Dirks could be back as soon as tomorrow’s game against the Houston Astros. However, since they aren’t certain the severity of the injury yet, we want to be absolutely positive that Dirks couldn’t further strain his intercostal muscles by playing before we let him on the field.
In short, Dirks, avoid medicine balls, bare-knuckle boxing matches, and sit-up competitions until your rib muscles are feeling better. Yes, we know those three activities comprise the majority of the entertainment in Florida, but just take it easy until you’re 100% again.
Justin Gawel is a barbecue rib enthusiast who mainly writes for Rant Sports about the Detroit Tigers. Follow him on Google+ for all of his article postings.