Doug Fister was shelled Thursday, allowing seven runs over two innings in a loss to the Padres. On Friday, things got worse.
The Nationals placed Fister on the 15-day disabled list Friday with right forearm tightness. Fister flew back to Washington, D.C., on Friday to be evaluated by the team doctor.
“All we know is that [Fister] said it got tight on him and we’re not going to push him,” Nationals manager Matt Williams said. “… The doc will take a look at it. We’ll get a result and go from there. All we can do.”
The Nats won't offer any early diagnoses, but forearm injuries have increasingly led to Tommy John surgery in recent years. It's too early to speculate, but the concern is certainly there that it could be a long-term injury.
In the short term, Fister's spot will be taken by prospect A.J. Cole. Cole pitched three innings out of the bullpen Friday, but the club might also use Cole in Fister's turn in the rotation later.
Other options include Tanner Roark, who would need to be stretched out after starting the year in the bullpen, or getting by without a fifth starter. Much of the team's decision will be based on Fister's immediate outlook.
If Cole or Roark joins the rotation on a long-term basis, either would be worth owning in a mixed league given their potential for wins. More should be known on Fister, and therefore the team's plan moving forward, in the coming days.
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It's earlier than expected, but Hunter Pence isn't one to sit still.
The energetic outfielder, who has been sidelined since spring training with a broken left arm, will be activated Saturday after his rehabilitation went quicker than originally projected.
“A little sooner than we probably thought,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said, adding the Giants decided to activate Pence “because of the way he feels, the way he’s been playing and swinging. He’s ready. The last couple of games have been really good for him. He said he never felt better, so he’s on his way.”
Pence will be an immediate boost to the Giants' offense, which has missed him and the departed Pablo Sandoval. The Giants were 14th among 15 National League teams in runs scored before Friday's 10-run outburst.
Pence's arrival bodes poorly for Justin Maxwell, who has hit .250/.309/.400 with three homers, 16 RBI and 13 runs scored in Pence's absence. He'll move back into a fourth oufielder's role with Pence's return. Daily owners, get Pence in your lineups promptly.
Troy Tulowitzki has once again been the subject of trade rumors, so it was that much more intriguing when the shortstop was removed suddenly from Friday's game against the Dodgers.
Despite the implications, Tulowitzki actually left the game with what the team said was "left quadriceps tightness." He'll be re-evaluated after the game, but it sounds as though the team was simply being cautious with its superstar.
On the trade front, the organization has attempted to put those whispers to rest as well. Rockies general manager Jeff Bridich said the most recent trade winds are a "media production."
"What's gone on the last few days, especially the last 72 hours, really has a been a media production, more than anything else," Bridich said. "It started with a couple of articles coming out of the East Coast — MLB.com and another one on NewYorkPost.com. Since then, it's really been mostly a media production."
Bridich went on to say that the Rockies' recent performance -- Carlos Gonzalez snapped an 11-game losing streak with a game-winning homer Thursday -- contributed to the rumors.
Tulowitzki has also done his part to quiet the speculation, saying his agent, Paul Cohen, was never told to demand a trade out of Colorado. Despite the seeming inevitability of a trade, it appears as though Tulo will remain with the organization for now.
National League Quick Hits: Jayson Werth left Friday's game against the Padres after being hit in the wrist by a pitch. Werth will be re-evaluated soon ... Padres manager Bud Black said the team is hopeful Wil Myers (wrist) will be able to return to the lineup on Tuesday. Myers is dealing with tendinitis in his left wrist, and he received a cortisone shot in the wrist on Wednesday ... Giancarlo Stanton put on a show Friday, blasting a pair of solo homers in a loss to the Braves. Stanton now has 10 home runs and an MLB-best 35 RBI on the year ... the Dodgers activated Kenley Jansen from the 15-day disabled list. Jansen recorded four strikeouts in an inning of work Friday, allowing a baserunner after a dropped third strike ... Ryan Braun appears to be trending in the right direction, homering twice and driving in three runs against the Mets on Friday. Braun is hitting .355 over his past nine games ... Brandon Belt had a huge day at the plate Friday, homering and collecting four RBI in a win over the Reds. He finished 3-for-5 with a three-run homer and an RBI double ... Kyle Lohse kept the Mets in check Friday, tossing eight shutout innings in a win. It has been a rough start to the year for Lohse, who still owns a 5.85 ERA after the dominant performance.
American League Quick Hits: Shane Greene left Friday's start against the Cardinals with a nerve issue in his elbow. Greene held the Cardinals scoreless over five innings before exiting. The Tigers should have more information on Greene's status shortly ... Jered Weaver shut down the Orioles on Friday, limiting them to one run on three hits over 7 1/3 innings. The right-hander has now allowed just one run over his last 16 1/3 innings ... Lorenzo Cain enjoyed a big night, finishing 3-for-4 with five RBI in Friday's win over the Yankees. Cain is batting .326/.378/.478 overall ... Adrian Beltre hit a historic home run in Friday's loss to the Indians. Beltre smacked the 400th home run of his career in the first inning ... the Astros signed Jose Veras to a minor league contract. Veras owned a nice 3.03 ERA over 32 2/3 innings with the club last season ... Clay Buchholz threw a great game Friday, striking out 11 over eight innings in a no-decision. Buchholz' only mistake was a sixth-inning solo homer by Seth Smith ... Chase Whitley hit the disabled list with a right elbow sprain Friday. The injury could be fairly serious and may require a long stay on the DL.