When Eric Wedge announced this week that Victor Martinez is still struggling with a bum hammy he injured Opening Day, it was yet another piece of information long withheld by the Tribe, who seem to be taking their management cues from Bill Belichick.
It started, you'll recall, with Joe Borowski. He was struggling at the end of spring training and into the early part of the season, and reporters noticed his velocity was down, which was troubling, since JoeBlow didn’t throw hard to begin with. Asked about his 82-mph stinkers, though, Tribe management said nothing was wrong. Two weeks later, they admitted that he strained his triceps in spring training and was trying to play through it. ...
They took the same tack with Travis Hafner and, later, Victor Martinez.
Why? Here’s a theory: Eric Wedge is a big fan of the grinder. Gritty, grindy, gutsy, grittindutsy guys are important. Go out, do the work, grind through the problems, and, while you’re at it, grow some damn facial hair, you pansy. The guys on this team must feel it’s their duty to grind through the minor injuries for the sake of the team.
In fact, it’s likely that nagging injuries have been affecting most of the Indians, only we don’t know because no one at the Prog will admit it. But C-Notes has obtained an internal health report detailing the ailments, physical and otherwise, being suffered by the Tribe’s key members, which might explain why they’ve been hitting like a Special Olympics team:
After having corrective LASIK surgery, Peralta enjoyed his improved vision so much that he wanted to go back for more sessions, believing that he could gain superhuman eyesight with more LASIK. No doctors would perform additional procedures, so he took matters into his own hands by shining various lasers into his eyes. Irreparable damage followed. In place of the baseball, Peralta now sees three fuscia colored hummingbirds.
Diagnosis: Fatigue, dehydration
While Grady isn’t having a horrible year (.258/.371/.859), he’s not the miraculous superhero the Indians imagined. That’s because he’s tired. When the superfan group Grady’s Ladies
first started, Grady agreed, we understand, to sleep with every member of the group every night that he is in town. But what started as only a handful of gals has grown into a roster of hundreds, so many, in fact, that every waking moment of Grady’s life not spent on the ball field is spent in the sack. Understandably, he’s totally drained. We’re totally jealous. And we’re totally available should he need to go to the pen.
This doesn’t actually make any sense, but we can’t think of anything else that could make someone hit so feebly and Ebola-like.
Diagnosis: Major blood loss
While hunting in the offseason – all guys with beards hunt, right? – he shot himself in the leg. Since he is Eric Wedge’s favorite of all favorite grinders, Blake decided not to have the bullet removed or tell anyone that he has buckshot in his leg. Also, he’s not very good at baseball. That’s not technically an injury, of course, but it seems relevant.
Diagnosis: Excessively Huge Ass Syndrome
Developed through his years as a catcher, this little-known disease makes turning on the baseball a real bitch. Treatment thus far has been unsuccessful. No doctors have told us any of this, but we’re pretty sure it’s right because, well, look at his ass. It’s huge! It’s hard to fit in the dugout with that much junk un your trunk, let alone hit a baseball.
The Indians won’t confirm it, but it’s believed that Gutierrez lost his arms in a freak smoothie-making accident in the off-season. What else could explain hitting like that?
-- Vince the Polack