Zumaya injured, planet continues to rotate

by billfer on July 18, 2009 · 10 comments

in 2009 Season,Injuries

UPDATE 9:24 Zumaya has been placed on the DL with right shoulder soreness. Ryan Perry has been recalled.

Tigers-Yankees

Mark Teixeira destroys a Joel Zumaya fastball to give the Yankees a 5-3 lead

Joel Zumaya is jetting back to Detroit today to get an MRI on his throbbing shoulder. Really, this was probably just a matter of time given Zumaya’s injury history and the chances of an injury-free season from the fireballer are pretty much non existent.

Zumaya said the pain is so intense he can’t lift his arm over his head. Hopefully the injury isn’t too serious, but some time away from late inning leads might not be the worst thing in the world either.

Zumaya has been mostly brutal lately. He’s had some moments to be sure, but they are in between late inning meltdowns. His latest came against the Yankees when tasked with a 3 run lead it went single-double-homer and didn’t get better. Lee has a diary of Zumaya’s recent implosions.

It’s hard to say whether the arm pain has played into any of those or not. Zumaya is still throwing the ball hard and the fact he has all his velocity after his litany of injuries is amazing in and of itself. But if he isn’t walking guys, he’s getting hit way too hard for someone who can throw that fast.

The fact that Zumaya was being used in the 7th inning last night instead of the 8th inning may have been an indication of Leyland’s wavering confidence. It appears that Brandon Lyon/Bobby Seay were set for the primary set-up duties, and this was before the blow-up.

 
 

{ 10 comments }

Rob July 18, 2009 at 11:25 am

Zumaya is trash, I’m so sick of him. I hope I don’t have to see any more of his crap for the rest of the year. No control, almost all fastballs. My grandmother could sit and wait until one of his fastballs (finally) hits the strikezone and then drive it. I hope they send him to Erie for the rest of the season after he is healthy and they leave him there until he gets a clue how to pitch.

scotsw July 21, 2009 at 9:27 am

“Trash”???? That’s a bit harsh. Zumaya has been dealing with some serious injuries, Rob. You make it sound like it’s a character flaw. I would be happy to bet you $1000 that you can not even foul off a 100 mph fastball, given 5 trys.

My complaint is that the Tigers never seem to be willing to wait long enough for the guy to have a full recovery. And, on the other hand, his delivery is violent and these injuries are unavoidable.

Of course, I want Zumaya to be healthier and to pitch better. But he’s working his butt off for the organization, and for the fans, and a little appreciation for that is in order. What he does for a living ain’t easy.

T Smith July 18, 2009 at 11:35 am

This is all too predictable. I knew as soon as Teixiera hit his bomb that I’d be reading this very article in the morning. I’m tiring of the Tiger’s habit of continually making excuses that serve somehow to exonerate the player/manager whenever a specific performance results in an embarrassing meltdown that costs a game. If Zumaya is truly injured (which he could be), then it was profoundly incompetent to use him (in a one-run game no less). Regardless, it was clear he wasn’t right after the first pitch, which suggests to me this latest “physical ailment” was existent prior to the first meatball he threw. Or did he somehow get injured after he gave up 3 runs without recording a single out? And if so, why didn’t Leyland or Knapp sprint out there to protect their guy and see if everything was okay and/or pull him after it was obvious something wasn’t right? Rather, you ask an injured player to finish off the inning ??

I’m sorry, I’m not buying a single word of it. I know it’s harsh, and I also know I’ll take some shots here for not expressing sympathy, but it just doesn’t add up. A) you don’t ask a guy who is not 100% healthy to protect a one run lead against a potent lineup in one the most hostile venues on the planet, and B) you don’t risk further injury if he’s not 100% healthy by allowing him to continue to get knocked around. How convenient to cry injury AFTER they knock the cover off the ball.

In any case, it’s clear that protecting egos is just an important to the Tigers organization as winning games. If you can’t just option Zumaya down to Toledo without fabricating an injury, seemingly to protect his ego, and if you can’t just recall Perry because former player simply needs to work out his control in the club’s AAA team, this organization is sending out the wrong message to its players and fans. That is, if you get hurt — or if your hurt — it’s okay — you get a pass. At least the Tigers had the courage to platoon Maggs instead of putting him on DL for tired bat speed.

On the other hand, if there truly is a physical problem with Zumaya that cost the game, the manager should be held responsible for incompetence and pitcher abuse. Either way, I smell a goat.

billfer July 18, 2009 at 1:09 pm

I have called out the medical staff and coaching staff and player in such situations in the past. But I think you’re off on this one. They don’t fly him back to Detroit for an MRI for a made-up injury. And nobody is saying he was hurting when he went out there, or when he threw the pitch to Texeira.

This is a guy routinely throwing 100 so there weren’t observable problems that would point to a shoulder injury. His control has been erratic, and then usually signals elbow problems and not shoulder. And when you look at the context of Zumaya’s career, him battling control isn’t anything new.

He also has a tremendous injury history so this really should come as little surprise.

This is a real injury, and no I don’t think the Tigers should have been expected it to see it from the dugout.

Coleman July 18, 2009 at 1:39 pm

I was commenting when he came out it seemed odd his fastballs were topping out at around 98 (as odd as that sounds, this is Zumaya)–it seemed like something wasn’t quite right at the start…and yet not wrong enough to be obvious, maybe even to him (98 is 98 after all). Or maybe he was just trying not to throw as hard. Or maybe the guns at Yankee stadium read slower than others…etc.

Keith (Mr. X) July 18, 2009 at 11:47 am

Every rose has its thorns.

Keith (Mr. X) July 18, 2009 at 11:55 am

I do agree that the umpires should of called a rain delay sooner and Leyland should of pulled Zumaya out of the game. 36 pitches in one inning in the rain would probably hurt anyones arm, but especially a hard throwing pitcher. It was a disaster waiting to happen.

RPS July 18, 2009 at 12:03 pm

Worst part is he probably had a ton of trade value a month ago.

He’s really coming to the crossroads. Between now and next spring, he has to decide whether he wants to get better and have a long career, or keep doing what he does, bounce around the minors, and retire at 29.

Kathy July 21, 2009 at 10:17 am

Not sure how he can make a decision whether he wants to play if his shoulder is shot. The injury pretty much dictates a decision. My big concern is with Carlos Guillen and his injury. He’s been out for months with what they are calling a sore shoulder. Now, it’s got to be more than that for him to be gone this long. There must have been an injury or a tear. Also, according to reports, it’s still hurting. If he needs or needed surgery why didn’t they just put him on the DL for 60 days. I suppose they wanted to see if it could heal first, but I”m not real optimistic about Guillen. He’s still in Erie.

Ypsi July 18, 2009 at 3:37 pm

As mean as it sounds I am glad that he is hurt and on the DL. Now Leyland will have no problem, if his shoulder gets better, sending him down to the minors to learn how to ‘PITCH’ instead of trying to get by throwing 3-1 fastballs to Mark Teixeira.

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