The issue is no longer whether or not Guitar Hero is indeed the sole source of his arm trouble. The point is that it MIGHT contribute, that the trainers have some inkling that it can do so, that they have TOLD Zoom about this, so he is AWARE of the issue, and he STILL INSISTS ON PLAYING THE BLOODY GAME.
I understand that he enjoys the game but, Zoom? YOU MISSED PART OF THE POSTSEASON LAST YEAR. THE POSTSEASON. THE THING THAT THE TIGERS HADN’T BEEN TO IN A QUADRILLION YEARS AND IT WAS A MAGICAL FACT THAT THEY WERE THERE AT ALL AND YOU MISSED IT. YOU MISSED IT BECAUSE YOUR ARM WAS SORE AND THIS MIGHT, MIGHT HAVE SOMETHING TO DO WITH GUITAR HERO.
I’m not even that bothered that he missed the A’s series last year. I can understand a situation where after the first time they say – “Joel, I think this video game is messing with your wrist” and Joel thinking “No way.”
He’s young and full of confidence and it is certainly understandable. But after the recurrence in the playoffs, maybe the light bulb should have gone on. The risk-reward proposition here just doesn’t seem worth it. I’m certainly not hating on Zumaya. I just want Joel to have a long and successful career, hopefully for the Tigers. And what may be missing from the story is mention of the various wrist strengthening exercises that Joel may be doing to guard against this – in case it is the fact he grips the ball too hard.
That’s not to say he doesn’t care about performing well. He’s been in Lakeland a couple weeks already. And via Jason Beck there was an interesting NY times piece about Joel Zumaya, Barry Zito, and others using yoga and meditation as a regular part of their offseason regimen. I knew that Zito and Zumaya had trained together a couple years ago and that Zumaya added speed because of these works outs. I didn’t know this is what those workouts were, and still are.
And finally some neat stories from Jon Paul Morosi today about when last seasons success all sank in. Oh yeah, and Zumaya is engaged.
UPDATE: I neglected to include this link to D-Town baseball which opines on whether Zumaya should be starting or in the pen. Up until the drafting of Andrew Miller and emergence of Jurrjens and Vasquez I thought he should at least be given a shot as a starter. Right now that need doesn’t seem as pressing so I’m content with him in his current high leverage-multi inning role. But I have heard of some talk that he might be looked at as a starter again.