It’s time to question the Yankees’ medical staff

Fan Confidence Poll: July 22nd, 2013
7/22-7/25 Series Preview: Texas Rangers
(Streeter Lecka/Getty)
(Streeter Lecka/Getty)

Prior to last night’s walk-off loss to the Red Sox, the Yankees announced Alex Rodriguez would not be returning to the team this week due a Grade I quad strain. He is their latest player to not just get hurt, but to suffer some kind of setback or new injury while coming back from the initial injury. It’s been happening all year and is a major problem.

The Yankees have been trying to tread water until their lengthy list of injured players return, but none have returned. Well, none have returned and stayed returned. They’re all getting hurt again almost immediately. All of them, not like one or two guys. This isn’t the one-year thing either; the Yankees dealt with so many setbacks last summer I dubbed it the Year of the Setback. Turns out that was only the start.

At this point, after all these injuries and re-injures, it is fair to question the club’s medical staff. Why can’t they keep anyone healthy? Now, obviously some of these injuries are total flukes. Curtis Granderson‘s broken forearm and broken hand? Flukes on hit-by-pitches. Frankie Cervelli‘s broken hand? Fluke on a foul ball. Cervelli’s elbow injury while rehabbing the hand? That’s not a fluke — he reportedly altered his throwing motion to compensate for the hand.

By no means is this complete, but here’s a list of the most significant injuries and re-injuries over the last two seasons (in roughly chronological order):

  • Michael Pineda (right shoulder): Diagnosed with inflammation in Spring Training last year, then suffered a torn labrum during an April rehab game. Had season-ending surgery last May.
  • Brett Gardner (right elbow): Hurt his elbow making a sliding catch last April, suffered three (!!!) setbacks before having surgery in July that effectively ended his season. Three setbacks!
  • Andy Pettitte (left leg): Hard-hit ground ball fractured his leg near his ankle, then he suffered a setback because he pushed his rehab too hard.
  • Derek Jeter (left ankle, right quad): Played through a bone bruise in his left ankle last September, suffered a fracture in October. Wasn’t ready for Opening Day, then had a setback (a new, smaller fracture) in May. Returned from the DL and suffered a Grade I quad strain the very same day.
  • A-Rod (left hip, left quad): Hip surgery in January before suffering the Grade I quad strain on Friday, three days before he was tentatively scheduled to return.
  • Granderson (left forearm, right hand): Two fractures, both flukes. Bad luck.
  • Cervelli (right hand, right elbow): Foul ball broke the hand, then he suffered a stress reaction in his elbow during rehab.
  • Mark Teixeira (right wrist): Injured his tendon sheath taking batting practice in March. Returned to the team in late-May following three months of rehab, needed season-ending surgery roughly two weeks later.
  • Kevin Youkilis (back): Came to the Yankees with a history of back problems, hit the DL with a bulging disc in late-April. Came off the DL in late-May and was hurt again less than two weeks later, this time with (likely) season-ending surgery.

I feel like I might be missing someone, but that list gets the point across. We could even extend this to the minor league system if we want. Manny Banuelos missed a few starts last April with a back problem before being shut down with a bone bruise in his elbow in May. He eventually had Tommy John surgery in September. Injuries and setbacks have become the Yankees way.

Evaluated a training staff is one of those things that is nearly impossible to do from the outside. We have no idea who is responsible for what, who monitors rehab work in Tampa, none of that stuff. All we know is that Steve Donohue is the head trainer at the big league level and Mark Littlefield is his assistant. Both were promoted after Gene Monahan retired following the 2011 season. That’s pretty much it.

Regardless of who does what on the medical staff, the circumstantial evidence says they aren’t doing a very good job. Not at all. That circumstantial evidence is pretty damning. If one or two guys get hurt and have a setback … yeah it happens. It sucks but it happens. When five or six or eight have setbacks in such a relatively short period of time, you have to ask why. The team has to self-evaluate.

(Elsa/Getty)
(Elsa/Getty)

The elephant in the room here is the age of the roster. The Yankees have an old roster and conventional wisdom says older players both get hurt more often and take longer to recover than young players. It comes with the territory. Remember though, the old roster is completely intentional. The Yankees decided to plug every last roster hole with an aging veteran at some point in the last 18 months for whatever reason. That’s tempting the injury gods.

If you’re going to build a roster out of old players — to be fair, the Yankees have had a ton of success doing that before this season — shouldn’t a little alarm go off that says “we need to make sure we have a top notch medical staff to watch over these old players?” That’s a logical step to take, right? The Yankees appear to have missed that memo and now their players are dropping like flies. Then re-dropping like flies.

Are Donohue and Littlefield the reason every Yankee is getting injured and re-injured (and re-re-injured in some cases)? Maybe, but we have no what of knowing. Like I said before, a medical staff is a tough thing to evaluate from the outside. It could just be a coincidence all of this started happening when Monahan retired, but it would be foolish to outright dismiss his replacements as the cause of all these injury problems without further investigation. The team owes it to themselves to get an answer.

On average, the Yankees lost more games to injury than any other team from 2010-2012. They lost the second most games to injury last season and they probably sit atop that same list this year. Health and durability isn’t a market inefficiency per se, but there has been a greater emphasis placed on keeping players healthy in recent years. Teams are so well run — especially in the AL East, the division is brutal — that it isn’t just about having the best players anymore. It’s about have the best player on the field for the most amount of time. The Yankees are losing that battle in a big way and it’s costing them, both wins and dollars.

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Fan Confidence Poll: July 22nd, 2013
7/22-7/25 Series Preview: Texas Rangers
  • mick taylor

    people laughed when i asked months ago why these injuries were not happening like this when gino was here

    • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

      It might be the training staff.

      It also might be the fact that all the players are that much older this time around.

      It’s really, really hard to prove either.

      • JLC 776

        One other possibility that passes the sniff test:

        You’ve got veterans that actually care that are (possibly) pushing themselves a little too hard to come back.

        • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

          Truth.

          • Preston

            I agree with this. But if that’s the problem it still needs to be solved. There needs to be somebody either a doctor or trainer who commands their respect and convinces them to put on the brakes.

    • BFDeal

      People also laughed last season when you kept ranting for the Yankees to sign Travis Hafner. What’s your point?

      • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

        And Grady Sizemore.
        And Josh Hamilton for 1/$40M.

        • Robinson Tilapia

          Bottom line: People laugh at mick taylor.

          • Sweet Dick Willie

            But not at his guitar playing.

    • trr

      This is one question that’s really tough to answer. There’s been an ungodly amount of injuries, but does anybody think the Yankee Medical Staff / Training Staff is really that incompetent? If I had to guess (and that’s all it is) I’d say it’s a combination of bad luck and older players.

  • JohnnyC

    Of course it’s valid to question. It was valid to question the Mets’ medical/training staff a few years ago and belatedly changes were made. Frankly, Cashman hasn’t been super-quick to remedy obvious issues in the organization. It took several years and literally 75% of their pitching prospects getting injured to realize Nardi Contreras was doing more harm than good with his wacky methods. Hopefully going forward Gil Patterson is a competent replacement.

  • Chris in Maine

    Talk about “ask and though shall receive,” I sent this question in 2 hours ago!

  • Tucker

    It was skipped over a little bit, but I think there is also a huge problem with the training staff in the minor leagues. Look at all the injuries they’ve had to pitchers over the last few years: Banuelos, Brackman (although he came broken so that may not count), Campos, Montgomery…just to name a few. I think there needs to be an evaluation of the entire system, though I bet that already is or is going to happen.

    • your mom

      Don’t forget Hensley and now Clarkin. Even our youngest prospects are getting injured. It’s a fucking curse. The curse is so bad it fucked Mo up last year.

      • Scout

        I’m not defending the training staff, much less the minor league organization as a whole or Cashman’s leadership, but injuries need to be viewed in comparison with some baseline. Athletes suffer injuries. So the question should be whether the Yankees suffer them at a higher rate than other organizations, whether the Yankees diagnose them incorrectly more often than others, etc.

      • Bo Knows

        Hensley’s issues are genetic, Clarkin just sprained an ankle which can happen anywhere

      • MannyGee is no longer an ACE

        Don’t think you can blame Clarkin on anyone. HE wasn’t with the team yet when he twisted his ankle I think.

        • MannyGee is no longer an ACE

          er, sprained

  • Robinson Tilapia

    Mike didn’t write this. This had to have been written by some sort of combination of stuart a and my wife.

    It’s a tough thing to evaluate from the outside unless you have specific knowledge of what the structure of their medical staff, from the minor to major leagues, looks like. If someone here does, I’ll be glad to hear about it.

    It reads well and, sure, where there’s smoke, there’s fire, but we can do little much but finger-wave here.

    That being said, yes, I’m sick and tired of veterans supposedly coming back only to have the same, or different, body part break down almost immediately. I’m also sick and tired of waiting twice as long as I feel I need to for injured young players because of apparent misdiagnosis or failed rehab attempts that lead to surgery anyway.

    Who to blame? I have no clue, and it wouldn’t make me feel any better to blame anyone better. Just tell me it’s been fixed and I’ll be fine. I don’t actually need to see a head rolling all the time.

  • Robinson Tilapia

    I forgot to say that I appreciate Mike, my wife, and stuart writing a well-balanced assessment that pulls back on the finger-pointing while being thorough.

  • http://www.nra.org Guns

    It’s time to question a lot of things about the Yankees.

    • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

      It’s time to question a lot of things about the Yankees a lot of commenters on RAB.

      • Robinson Tilapia

        We already know the answers to some of that.

      • http://www.nra.org Guns

        It’s time to question a lot of things about the Yankees why Jim has a lot of questions about a lot of commenters on RAB.

        The microscope is on YOU Jimbo. You’re on notice.

        • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

          Cool beans.

          • http://www.nra.org Guns

            Well shit, I thought it was funny.

            • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

              Oh I wasn’t trying to be dismissive. I just didn’t have much of a response.

            • Robinson Tilapia

              I don’t normally agree with you, Guns, and you know that, but I’d say Jim is Evading.

              • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

                Evading?

                Not sure what I was evading. I embrace microscopes.

  • Jim James

    In the case of Jeter’s aborted return I think it’s also fair to consider the front office’s role regarding nosediving YES Network ratings & continued attendance issues.

    • Jon G

      Jim James, I’d much rather see a live performance by My Morning Jacket than this year’s Yankees team…

      • bpdelia

        there you go. my band played a few shows with them before “it still moves”. and they were amazing on that tour. opened with “mageetah” both times I saw them. Not a huge fan of the albums after z but the first 2 and then it still moves were fantastic albums

  • billbybob

    Meh…you are drawing conclusions with muddled evidence.

    • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

      “Are Donohue and Littlefield the reason every Yankee is getting injured and re-injured (and re-re-injured in some cases)? Maybe, but we have no what of knowing…The team owes it to themselves to get an answer.”

      Really? Where in that paragraph was the conclusion?

      • Robinson Tilapia

        In the one written by mick taylor.

      • billbybob

        I guess I should have said it is speculation and that there is no real evidence the training staff plays any role in these injuries.

        • Robinson Tilapia

          I hear you. I do think that, once you really read Mike’s write-up, he pulled his punches rather well.

          I’ve made jokes about this already, but I wind up arguing against this every night every time I let my wife know another Yankee got injured. This, in one way or another, is on fans’ minds somewhere. Hell, Ryan Rucco is talking about it RIGHT NOW as I type this.

          • billbybob

            I should have read more carefully but the article title “It’s time to question the Yankees Medical Staff” implies that the staff has done something wrong.

            • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

              No it doesn’t, it implies that it’s fair to question whether they have or not.

              “Have you done something wrong?” can be answered with a “Nope” too.

              • billbybob

                It is semantics I guess, but to me you wouldn’t ask the question unless you thought the person has done something wrong. Certainly that is my own take and I respect your position Jim who is bored.

                • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

                  Well don’t you think there’s at least reason for suspicion? Wouldn’t it be a bit irresponsible to not at least look into it?

                  Obviously the training staff has some impact on player health, completely discounting them as a potential negative would be presumptuous too.

                • Robinson Tilapia

                  ….and a peckerhead.

                  Seriously, though, I’m curious as to what you think of what Mike says in the body of the article. Not pointing fingers at all here.

                  • billbybob

                    Just thought the article doesn’t flow in linear fashion. First the title leads to believe I will find a good reason to question the Yank’s medical staff. But then evidenced is produced which shows that many of the injuries were bad luck or could have been age related. I’m not really sure I understand what point Mike was making of if he just wants the reader to arrive at their own conclusion.

              • Stratocaster

                “Have you done something wrong?” can be answered with a “Nope” too.

                Not in my house. Not successfully anyway. ;)

        • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

          I mean I think it’s a fair question, at least. Which is all I read Mike as doing.

          I think he admitted there’s hardly any proof either way, and “Old age” and “bad luck” might be a perfectly valid explanation. Who knows.

          • Robinson Tilapia

            We’ll invite you over for dinner, Jim, and you explain it to her. Do you mind eating vegetarian?

            • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

              Love veggies. I’m an equal opportunity eater.

              But I probably would not attempt any such thing, as I normally do not like to make enemies that quickly.

            • Gonzo

              You’re a vegetarian?

              • Robinson Tilapia

                My wife is, other than fish and dairy. I’m fine eating mostly vegetarian at home. She has no problem making me a burger if I wanted one. I actually enjoy cooking vegetarian myself as well.

                • Gonzo

                  I only mention because I’m a vegetarian. It’s really opened up my cooking style. I used to use meat as a crutch in almost every meal.

                  • Robinson Tilapia

                    We have a lot of fun not using meat. We make a mean Seitan Philly Cheesesteak. :)

                    • Gonzo

                      I gotta try that.

                  • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

                    I constantly use meat as a crutch.

                    A delicious, juicy, life-giving crutch.

                    • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

                      Life-giving might have been a poor choice of words. Alas, I am a peckerhead.

                    • Gonzo

                      No worries. I laughed.

  • Nick

    Valid point-but Steve Donohue is not new-he was along time assistant of the previous trainer.
    That doesn’t mean I think he’s good.
    With all of the problems I’d be shocked if they didn’t overhaul the training and conditioning staff

  • http://www.nra.org Guns

    I don’t know how anyone can concentrate on stuff like this when the Royal Baby is on the way.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      If the baby were a Yankee, it’d be born with a Grade I quad tear.

      • your mom

        Or get a torn labrum while breast feeding.

        • Robinson Tilapia

          That’s royalty. There’s like ten wet nurses waiting, all of which would suffer a pulled pec muscle if they were Yankees.

          • Winter

            But instead of putting them on the DL the royal family would just leave them on the roster blocking other wet nurses from… um… nursing.

            • Robinson Tilapia

              Austin Aune would aim for the right titty and wind up biting one of the nurses in the nose. Repeatedly.

    • your mom

      Yeah, the douchess of Cambridge is giving birth!

  • ChrisS

    The team is old. O. L. D.

    Yankees have historically taken on risky prospects (e.g., Jagielo, Heathcott, Brackman, Joba, etc.) because they’re first round talent that slips a little due to injury concerns.

    TNSTAAPP.

    After that, sure maybe the medical staff has had some missteps.

    Also, I don’t think for a second that Granderson’s HBPs are flukes. Long has him standing closer to the plate and he’s reaching more than ever as pitchers try to keep fastballs away from him.

  • Manny’s BanWagon

    Way, way, way too small a sample size to make any conclusions about the medical staff.

    Jeter, Aroid, Youkilis and Pettitte can easily be assigned to age. Old players in every sport constantly get injured and Youk for one was pretty broken down when he was signed

    Granderson was just a fluke and right from the start, we were told there was about a 30% chance Teixiera would née surgery.

    Pinieda came into camp out of shape and was probably overthrowing. Pitchers of all ages all around baseball constantly get hurt too.

    IMO, this has been partly bad luck and partly the result of an ancient roster.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      How the heck did you wind up with “nee,” with an accent, there?

      • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

        hold alt and type, on a numpad, 0233.

        Or open word, insert a special character, and copy paste. But alt+numpad combos is the secret to accents and most special characters.

        • Winter

          I’m pretty sure R-Tils was asking why “née” was there, not how.

          • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

            Nah, he’s asked similar questions about tilde’s before.

          • Robinson Tilapia

            Yup. Very curious as to MBW’s autocorrect tendencies.

            • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

              Ah. Forgive me then.

              • Robinson Tilapia

                Jim is a Forgiven Peckerhead

      • Manny’s BanWagon

        iPad autocorrect at work again.

        • JLC 776

          Is ‘Aroid’ the default for iOS nowadays?

          • Robinson Tilapia

            Anything beginning with a “C” autocorrects to “Cashman Failed.”

    • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

      “Way, way, way too small a sample size to make any conclusions about the medical staff. ”

      I mean, I have to agree on the surface. But what would be a sufficiently large enough sample size? Guys get older every year, teams change players so often, it’s hard to imagine a situation where you could justify looking at a medical team purely based on numbers.

      But obviously all medical teams aren’t created equal, so I think that you need to be at least considering them as an issue when you have a run like this.

      I just hope it’s on a case by case basis.

      • Manny’s BanWagon

        Clinical studies in Medicine typically have hundreds if not thousands of subjects so I think we’re pretty far way with few cases cited here.

        • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

          That’s not really what I meant at all.

          I meant im comparing how this specific medical team handles the specific players they’re treating.

          My point is that we’re never going to reach hundreds or thousands of subjects with a professional sports medical team, but that doesn’t excuse them from evaluation. Evaluation just has to be more creative.

          • Manny’s BanWagon

            And to imply the training staff has done something wrong based on a few anecdotal cases and the little bit of information the Yankees release about injured players is pretty baseless and borderline irresponsible IMO.

        • Gonzo

          It really doesn’t matter. This is a results oriented business. Whether or not the team decides for the hundreds or thousands of cases, I bet they’ll have this discussion in the offseason if they haven’t already had it.

          I mean it’s pretty clear in larger samples that the White Sox are better than everyone else at this. Someone’s going to aim for that standard.

          I said the same thing when the pitching in the minors was not “making” it. Rightly or wrongly, something was going to change because it’s a business not a scientific experiment. And they did what I thought they were going to do, they reassigned Nardi. Does that mean Nardi is to blame, who knows, but there always has to be a fall guy in real business decisions with huge sums of money on the line.

    • nsalem

      Agreed 100%. Found the article to be without a point and baseless. How many of these players actually heed the advice of the team trainers. How many of them have their own trainers. How many report injuries in the proper fashion. It’s been a frustrating season, but everyone knew something like this season would eventually happen. To hurl the blame at 2 trainers in an admittedly unqualified manner is in poor taste.

      • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

        Oh my god.

        Mike didn’t blame the trainers. He suggested they could be one of the sources of the frequent recent setbacks. I think to completely absolve them of blame is a poor choice too.

        • nsalem

          To say the circumstantial evidence is damning (when it’s not) is implying that it’s the trainers fault.

          • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

            “Are Donohue and Littlefield the reason every Yankee is getting injured and re-injured (and re-re-injured in some cases)? Maybe, but we have no what of knowing”

            Nope.

            • nsalem

              Correct. I feel the article is a series of contradictory statements. Isn’t it the doctors the team doctors that give the players the clearance to resume certain activities anyway?

  • Hassey

    I got a pretty big sample size right here

  • Al

    This is the year that the Yankees should just blow up the team and Become sellers like the Red Sox did last year

  • Wil Nieves #1 Fan

    The Yankees fired their conditioning coach Marty Miller in 2007 when the entire lineup and their mothers suffered from pulled hamstrings and muscle strains.

  • Hassey

    If Woody had gone straight to the police, this would never have happened

    • King of Fruitless Hypotheticals

      we may be the only two that got that…related: you and I are old enough to get our doctors in trouble due to our performance…

  • Stratman9652

    Don’t forget Pedro Feliciano.

    • Gonzo

      Well it didn’t help that the Mets ran him out there every other day for two straight years.

  • Hassey

    I was at the game where Wil Nieves got his first hit after something like 40ABs…he tried to stretch it into a 2b and got gunned down at second…but he’ll always have Paris

  • Hassey

    Pedro Feliciano the blind singer pulled a hamstring?

  • Shittyshittybangbang

    Eduardo – don’t call me Eddy – “Benjamin Buttons” Nunez. That was a fun, 3 month rehab. Fucking guy appeared on milk cartons.

    • your mom

      Did you hear of the gay porn parody of that Brad Pitt flick? It was called, “The Curious Case of Benjamin’s Butthole.”

  • Gonzo

    Can we just trade for Jake Peavy just to find out what’s in the White Sox secret sauce?

  • Bottom Line

    Has anyone ever heard of withcraft hexes? Seems to me that is what is taking place this year with yankees. When you run out of answers in the natural and begin to see things that are not normal, you must begin to look at that which is beyond normal and gets into supernatural. It is possible. Research it.

  • JLC 776

    Just going to trow it out there – this kind of feels like that type of article that could have been written late last year blaming Kevin Long for not having an offense that could come through in RISP situations.

    And while I fully admit that during my darkest hours I wanted to blame Kevin for our anemic post-season, it’s really, really difficult to expertly draw that conclusion. I think blaming trainers and medical staff for injuries to professional athletes may or may not be a similar kind of tough conclusion to draw.

  • Mac

    Seems like a very fair and well-rounded analysis. Certainly worth questioning, but really hard to draw any definitive conclusions. Especially from the outside. No finger pointing or defeatism, which is honestly a shock on this site. Great to see.

    • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

      “No finger pointing”

      Not according to a bunch of people in this thread. Even though I completely agree with your interpretation.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      It’s, maybe unreasonably, on our minds, so I’m fine with putting it out there, but I agree. I’m also quite impressed by the comments thus far. This seemed like it could have been a potential bloodbath.

  • Jason

    Playing devils advocate. Lack of Hgh use may have more to do with slow recoveries and setbacks.

    • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

      Need data from MLB, not just the Yankees, to do any sort of study about that.

      • Jason

        Just wondering if since it was so widely used for injury recovery, there has to be some effect if it supposedly not being as widely used now.

        • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

          I wouldn’t be surprised if there were.

    • http://rab.com Michael Cutler

      great point!

  • alen

    money talks and BS walks

    I’ve read A-Rod’s salary is covered by insurance if he doesn’t play this year. otherwise the yankees have to pay up

    texeira’s is covered by world baseball classic since he injured himself there

    yankees save money by having these guys not play this year

    • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

      They still hit the salary cap.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      Baseless.

      If this were true, and the team were purposefully manipulating injury status of two of their top two stars to save a few dollars, they’d deserve whatever hell MLB would bring upon them for doing so.

      I don’t believe it for a second. I know one guy who would on here, though.

    • JLC 776

      Ack – no way. As bad as this season seems, they’re still in it and those are two names that could make a huge impact.

  • Robinson Tilapia

    Of course, it’s the time of day where something looks fishy with some of the comments on here.

    • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

      Haha I get it. Fishy.

  • JLC 776

    Let’s all just sit back and enjoy the 24/7 royal baby coverage.

    • Jason

      Yeah, another privileged inbred being born. Sad that people care.

  • Gonzo

    With a huge moneymaking business dependent on the talent, this is a reasonable question for the Yankees to ask internally if they haven’t already done so.

    When enough money is lost (in terms of talent here), heads usually roll. That’s business.

  • Bo Knows

    It’s perfectly fine to question whether the staff is doing its job, but at the same time you have to look at other circumstances.

    You can’t blame Cervelli’s elbow on the staff, that’s on the coaches, medical staff are not trained to know whether some guys mechanics are different or if he’s compensating, the only way medical personel are going to know a guy has done something different is after the fact. This might also explain why Banuelos ended up falling prey to TJ, the back injury made him compensate somewhere else (his elbow) and the stress proved too much.

    Teix’s injury, is very difficult because their is a ton of violence in swinging a bat hundreds of times a day, that no other individual is going to deal with. There is a lot of difficulty in trying to figure out whether someone’s wrist is well enough for that kind of constant stress. They were being cautious with him to begin with, and honestly there is probably a good chance that he actually was fine by most normal standards when he was cleared.

    Another thing we tend to ignore is that these are competitive athletes who absolutely hate being sidelined with cell of their body, and every bit of their soul’s. We can only trust what they were doing while on the Yankee premises, because I would bet money they were all doing extra work on the side to try and speed up their rehab.

    I study the human body, this is what I’m going to school for, so all of this does come into play, when I think about issues of health.

  • Joe

    LOL Francesa losing ALL credibility when he said you need power to win. Tell that to the Cardinals Mike. Best record in baseball near the bottom in baseball in homers.

    • Gonzo

      Not that I ever want to defend that guy but they are 2nd in the NL in SLG% behind the Rockies.

      Not all power is HR’s.

    • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

      That’s a bit oversimplified.
      An exception doesn’t disprove a rule.
      Cardinals are hitting by far a league best 338/408/468 w/risp.
      Which do you think is easier (or just likely) to achieve? Finding power hitters or building a team that will hit that insanely well w/RISP?
      Sure it’s possible to win without much power, but it is less likely.
      It’s taking the Cardinals great pitching and insane RISP success to do it.
      Especially in the AL east in a HR friendly ballpark.

  • http://rab.com Michael Cutler

    Outstanding job on pointing it out Mike, you are completely correct. . . I hope they make a change before Manny Banuelos comes back and they ruin his career. . . .

  • http://rab.com Michael Cutler

    They should just fire Cashman and everyone else right down the line and try to Hawk as many members of the Oakland Athletics organization as possible and start fresh. . .P.S. I’m glad Girardi brought up two right handed outfielders for the weekend so they could watch Lyle Overbay pound into gut wrenching double plays last night. . .way to make a gutsy move Girardi . . (sarcasm). . .

    • Robinson Tilapia

      Such great results from the Oakland F’ing A’s over the years. All those championships….

    • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

      GM’s make roster moves, not managers.
      I’m sure Girardi has input, but Cash has the final say.

      • Gonzo

        This isn’t the case with every organization. I’m not saying it isn’t for the Yanks just not every team.

        • Gonzo

          My bad. I thought you said lineup moves not roster moves.

  • Vern Sneaker

    Looking at the whole picture: a combination of bad luck, older players, bad rehab judgment, inadequate medical staff management issues in the organzation. For me the most important thing going forward is to get the team younger, much younger. Let’s see what the trade deadline brings, but if it’s not the beginning of a major rebuilding extending over the next year or two, then I’ll be pretty disappointed. We’ve got way too many holes/issues to solve with minor moves if we’re going to contend again in the intermediate future. We are not “six games over .500″ (for those who comfort themselves with that). We are 22-28 since May 25 and going backwards.

  • lee

    isn’t this issue much more complicated than just what the medical staff is doing? when it comes time to start bringing back an injured player, don’t management and the player also have a lot of input? i can easily see a situation where the trainers are urging caution, but management is pressing to get the player back because of the poor team performance which has led to declining TV ratings and attendance. and on top of that you have the player wanting to get back on the field yesterday. who really has how much say in these matters? unless the medical staff has 100% veto power i suspect there’s a lot of blame to go around.

  • The Real Greg

    I was questioning the medical staff last year when all the prospects kept getting hurt. Now it has moved up a level.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      Well, we’re glad someone is doing well after a promotion.

      *cha-ching*

  • David

    I’m coming in late to the conversation, but this has been on my mind for several years. I remember the almost trade with Seattle when the Mariners changed their mind- the reason given was that their Doctors didn’t like what they saw in Adams ankle injury.
    Considering how long he was out, I’ve wondered for awhile if our Doctors, medical and training staff were up to snuff.

  • mustang (The Has Beens & Wannabes Bunch 2013)

    I know this not a open thread but I have to get your comments on a situation that happen to me Saturday in Boston.
    Went to Boston on Friday with 3 of my boys, one of them drove us in their car. Our hotel in Boston had no AC. The hotel try to fix the issue, but couldn’t so they gave us 2 fans and didn’t charge us for the room. After the game Saturday the guy who owned the car said he wanted to go home because he couldn’t spend another night without A/C. My other friend and I wanted to stay and told him so he got angry and said ” I’m taking my car and going home”. I replied “So you’re going to leave us in Boston with no ride?” The guy was still mad said I’m just going back to the room.
    My other friend and I said “OK” and we went out for drinks and actually joked about what would happen if he actually left us.
    An hour later the guys call us says he is leaving and since we didn’t pay for the room we could rent a car and drive home on Sunday.

    Comments please I would love your take on this.

    • mustang (The Has Beens & Wannabes Bunch 2013)

      The trip was for 2 nights getting to Boston Friday and leaving Sunday. We are marry and this our boys baseball trip so it doesn’t happen very often.

      • mustang (The Has Beens & Wannabes Bunch 2013)

        Another thing I plan the whole trip and I drove the guys car 4 hours to Boston.

      • Jason

        Buy a train ticket and move on with life. Geez.

        • mustang (The Has Beens & Wannabes Bunch 2013)

          Live in upstate NY No train service near my home especially not from Boston.

    • BFDeal

      1. Find another friend. Yeah, it’s hot, but two days w/o AC isn’t the worst thing in the world.
      2. This is why I always volunteer to drive on road trips.

      • mustang (The Has Beens & Wannabes Bunch 2013)

        Bingo!

        The funny part is that as I left my car at his house since his house is on the way to Boston I said to myself damn I should just take my car.

        When we went to pick up my car he left my keys in the mailbox couldn’t even hand them to me.

    • KD

      Could you at least open a window in the hotel? If not, I probably would have left too, or gone to another hotel. If you COULD open a window, you “friend” is just a rude pussy. Was it El Duque or Alphanso?

      • mustang (The Has Beens & Wannabes Bunch 2013)

        I try calling a few hotels, but everything was booked.
        Don’t know about the windows.

  • Jim

    Maybe instead of it being the training staff’s fault, it is the old players, many of who were signed despite having a history of injuries, that should be blamed.

    Sometimes you guys sound like 12 year olds.

    • RetroRob

      Inside every adult male sits a 12-year-old!

      Yet you are right. This is a pretty comical thread, with all the outrage and assumptions only fans can jump to.

  • EndlessJose

    You should blame Pettitte and Jeter for forgetting there 40 years old and pushing themselves.Also for Jeter for masking an injury.

  • David

    It is fine to call Granderson’s two injuries flukes. What about his timeline though? We were all told 4-6 weeks of recovery. I believe we are in week 9 now and he just started taking BP. Are they now being overly cautious? How about being appropriately cautions

  • http://riveravenueblues mississppi doc

    Not fair, Mike. They are older players with chronic problems. Bad protoplasm at this point. ARod’s and Jeter’s muscle strains are common athletic injuries that happen, especially in older players. Tex and Gardener had joint injuries which were appropriately managed conservatively and subjected to surgery only when conservative management failed. Pettitte exceeded the prescribed activities, Cervelli injured himself again by changing his throwing motion, and Youkilis had a very symptomatic herniated disc that obviously needed surgery. The fractures were unrelated to the physicians. Unforunately, we are witnessing a perfect storm and the leadership of the team was/is poorly prepared to manage the problems.