Crowdsourcing “Minor” Spring Training Health Problems

As we reach the beginning of the Cactus and Grapefruit League schedules, pitchers are starting to ramp up towards opening day. It’s no longer just long toss and stretching, but now, they’re expected to throw actual innings at a physical effort level approaching what they’d do in the regular season. And, naturally, some players are experiencing some issues while ramping up, with some even heading off to get MRIs.

We know that these kinds of strains and pulls and soreness are pretty common in February and March, but what we don’t know — or at least, I don’t know — is how often these reported spring training issues turn into something more serious. Plenty of people out there have tracked and continue to track the “Best Shape Of His Life” group, but as I read about a few more pitchers going to the training room today, I wondered why we’re not tracking pitchers who report spring training pain, in order to learn what percentage of guys who have to undergo treatment in February and March end up on the DL in April through September.

So, that’s what this post is designed to do. While I try to stay on top of the news around baseball, there are far too many players for any one person to keep a complete list of every strain or pull reported by the local media, and so our best chance at collecting as much potentially useful data as possible is to crowdsource this. I’ve created a Google Doc with a handful of the pitcher health issues that I’ve seen reported so far, but I know there are plenty more out there that I’ve missed.

Additionally, there will be plenty more over the next month or so, and I’d like to keep this as updated as possible during March so that we can track the rate of which these pitchers end up missing regular season time, as well as compare their 2014 performance against what the forecasts had called for them to do before these health issues came to light.

The spreadsheet is embedded below, so you can see which pitchers have already been added to the list. You can access the spreadsheet from this link in order to add to it, using the same format already established, and we’ll follow along with this crop of pitchers and see how often these strains and pulls turn into something more serious.

We hoped you liked reading Crowdsourcing “Minor” Spring Training Health Problems by Dave Cameron!

Please support FanGraphs by becoming a member. We publish thousands of articles a year, host multiple podcasts, and have an ever growing database of baseball stats.

FanGraphs does not have a paywall. With your membership, we can continue to offer the content you've come to rely on and add to our unique baseball coverage.

Support FanGraphs




Dave is the Managing Editor of FanGraphs.

newest oldest most voted
bdhudson
Member
Member
bdhudson

Poor Mike Minor 🙁

Billy
Guest
Billy

Yikes! No kidding. When I saw that on the spreadsheet, I thought it was a joke, and then I read about it and… ugh. He’s had trouble urinating for two years! That doesn’t sound fun. At least it’s not his shoulder, I guess.

chuckb
Guest
chuckb

You don’t want Dr. James Andrews to have to take a look at that!

eyy
Guest
eyy

For the purposes of this spreadsheet though, it may be worth noting that Mike Minor is getting a delayed start due to shoulder soreness, which they attributed to him getting a late start to his throwing program after his urethra surgery. Unless the point is just to correlate any time of injury with any type of preseason concern. Presumably he’ll be more likely to hit the DL this year due to his shoulder than another urethra problem.

Anon21
Guest
Anon21

Excellent point! I changed it.