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Monday, February 22, 2010

The real Jesus (Flores)

My man Chico (the Writer) is on some kind of roll to start the spring. He's already in shape, ready to start the season. Maybe it's because the end is near and he knows he doesn't have to pace himself for a full season. Or maybe he's just plain good.

Whatever, it looks like he's about to hit another one outta the park with his upcoming story on Jesus Flores. He offers snippets in this Nationals Journal.

Yeah, there's some bias here because "Flo" is maybe my favorite player of all time. No particular reason. He just is. I love to watch him catch, love to watch him hit. He is the acorn of the blind squirrel that was JimBow, a significant find amid the heap of whatever that usually makes up Rule 5. He's a real, live keeper.

I'm concerned he'll never be quite right. I'm more concerned about the comments he did make and eager to read the rest of it. Sadly, it confirms what has been one of my fears: Are injuries being handled properly?

The 25-and-under talent on the shelf and trying to come back from something major is considerable: Flores, Jordan Zimmermann, Ross Detwiler. Does Scott Olsen fall into that class? He's pretty young, I'm just too lazy to go look. Chico (the Pitcher), too.

Could Chad Cordero have been saved with a quicker call on his injury? I'll never forget the night of his final appearance as a Nat, listening to Ray Knight subbing in the TV booth. He saw from the first pitch that "this young man is hurt" and stayed on the case until Cordero sadly threw his last pitch. Knight could see it clear as day from the booth. How come no one else saw that?

Did Ryan Zimmerman need to miss as much time as he did in 2008? Maybe but I can't help but wonder.

There's a lot of money invested in these young folks and your medical staff better be batting as close to 1.000 as possible. The team, from the front office down to the last player on the roster, better have complete confidence in the diagnosis and treatment.

It really doesn't matter what some old blogger in section 309 thinks. It does matter what the players think. Maybe I'm reading too much into it but it doesn't sound like Flores has that confidence.

I wonder what the other players think?


An Briosca Mor said...

Many people wrote off Nick Johnson after he missed all of 2007 and most of 2008 recovering from first his broken leg and then his tendon sheath thing. Many people wrote off Cristian Guzman after he missed all of 2006 and a big chunk of 2007 due to whatever the hell his injuries were. Both of those guys were out so long that people wrote them off, forgot about them. But the team never wrote them off or forgot about them, and they both were eventually able to come back if not as good as new, at least as good as could possibly have been expected. The same can happen with Flores. He's younger than those other two were, as well. The team won't forget about him when he's ready to come back. It can never hurt to take it slow.

MikeHarris said...

Taking it slow isn't my issue. I'm fine with that. Figuring it out faster is what I'd like to see.

Gus said...

I am amazed, with all the stats this game has, that I can't find a single website that shows number of days lost on the DL for each club!

Nick said...

Another issue, which is not as big with the team, but is larger with the kid himself, is that Flores no longer trusts the doctors, and perhaps no longer truss the organization in general. He's going to have some real trying times in the next year trying to get back onto the field, not only with Pudge catching the young pitchers, but also if Norris continues to progress at the minor league level throughout the year and is ready for a late season call-up.

My other concern is, at what point can a young, not to mention non-fluent English speaking kid, step up and say to the doctor, 'I am hurt, I can't play.'? These kids should be able realize that it is their body, and their injury and that some type of intuition on your own body needs to come into play. If we are pressuring these kids into playing through injuries (Not quite Varsity Blues, but not exactly 'The Plan' either), then it might be time for a change in the training room