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5 Early Injuries From MLB Spring Training That Could Prove Critical

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5 Early Injuries From MLB Spring Training That Could Prove Critical

MLB Spring Training
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Sometimes the biggest things can happen in only the first few days of Spring Training. Many times an entire season of expectations can be boosted or destroyed in the first game for a team. This can only happen through an unfortunate injury of course. Very often injuries early in the spring are minor and simply mess with the process of getting ready for the season but sometimes there is more to it than meets the eye.

A simple muscle injury that takes a player one week to get over can be a non-issue for a hitter if he is lucky but could force a pitcher to miss the start of the season. Depending on how a minor injury heals it can cause problems with the player’s ability to get himself fully ready which can lead to other more serious injuries during the early part of the season. Sometimes a serious injury can show its ugly head at this time of the spring as well.

Thankfully the more serious injuries are few and far between right now in 2014 Spring Training but there is the expected number of nagging issues going on all over MLB. We are going to look at five injuries that could be critical stories going forward over the next few weeks and even in one case over the course of the next year. You won’t see any normal muscle soreness mentioned in here because that would not possibly prove critical.

What you will see are some minor situations that could be no big deal but could well prove to be a vital part of the player and his team’s storyline over this season. Take a look at the few chosen and see what you think their progress will be. If you agree or disagree with what I suggest, I would love to discuss it below. Feel free to use the comments section in that case.

David Miller is a Senior Writer for Follow him on Twitter @davidmillerrant, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.


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Zack Greinke – Los Angeles Dodgers

Zack Greinke Spring Training
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It looks like Greinke might not have to worry about the long trip to Australia after all. His strained right calf is bothersome enough that he is likely out for the early opening series. Last season Greinke overcame a broken collarbone so this won’t mess his entire season up in all likelihood. They will treat it with care and make sure he doesn’t hurt it any more than it is hurt already. It could negatively affect the start of the Dodgers season though.

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Taijuan Walker – Seattle Mariners

Taijuan Walker Spring Training
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The Mariners are hanging all kinds of hopes on Walker this season and assuming that he will fit right in behind the two big names of the starting rotation. He has not thrown in recent days however because of shoulder soreness. Shoulder issues in a young pitcher like this can be something that derails an entire rookie season. That is because they would rather let him rest it completely and get it to full strength, then bring him back in Triple-A for a while to be cautious. No one in the organization wants to push this kid and mess up his shoulder. This could keep him from the MLB roster all season long if it does not turn around soon.

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Hisashi Iwakuma – Seattle Mariners

Hisashi Iwakuma Spring Training
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Unfortunately we stick with the Mariners for this next one and it could also be a big deal. Iwakuma came into camp with an injured middle finger on his pitching hand. Last season’s third place Cy-Young vote getter in the A.L. might as well be a batter going to the plate without a bat if he tried to pitch with that finger injured. He has yet to pitch in any way and the Mariners are very cautious about his status right now. This would be a huge loss if they were without him for a period of time longer than a few weeks.

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Casey Janssen – Toronto Blue Jays

Casey Janssen
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No matter which way you slice it, Janssen is one of the elite closers in MLB right now. He is as automatic as anyone in the ninth inning but right now he is dealing with shoulder issues. That is a bigger deal for him because it is not new. He had surgery on that shoulder and dealt with soreness in it many times before. It could just be a minor speed bump in his season but it could be a bigger deal as well.

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Miguel Sano – Minnesota Twins

Miguel Sano Spring Training
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Sano is one of the most well respected highly ranking prospects in the game of baseball. It was terrible news then that he has to have Tommy John surgery. Though it is more common for a pitcher to have this surgery, it is not unheard of for it to happen to other players, especially infielders. His track to the majors might not be terribly affected by this but then again it could be. Here’s hoping he does great things in his rehab.