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lefty31mazur wrote:In an examination today, Ben Sheets was disagnosed with a strained muscle alongside the shoulder muscle he tore last August. He appears to be questionable for Opening Day.
Sheets, who tore his right latissimus dorsi muscle, now has a strained teres major muscle in the back of his shoulder. "It's a strain of a muscle that's taking on more of a workload than it used to," team doctor William Raasch said. "That's where we are right now." Sheets will initiate a weight training regimen specifically designed to further strengthen the teres major muscle. The Brewers hope to know in about a week whether he'll be ready to go on Opening Day. His stock has dropped slightly now, but he's going to be one of the NL's best pitchers when healthy. Mar. 11 - 5:00 pm et
Adam McCalvy on MLB.com wrote:Sheets threw off a mound on Sunday morning, but missed his second straight start because of a strained teres major muscle in his upper back. The good news is that he threw 10-15 curveballs during his eight-minute session.
"It feels great," Sheets said. "We've been stretching it more aggressively than we had been over the last five or six days and my arm has been way freer. I've got my easy pop back and my extension."
Knowing now that Ben Sheets most likely won't pitch Opening Day, will he open the season on the disabled list?
-- Ron B.
Assuming things progress positively as they have over the last week, it does not look like Sheets will have to start the year on the DL. He is almost certainly a no-go for April 3 against the Pirates, but because of perfectly-placed off-days on April 6 and 11, manager Ned Yost could go with a four-man rotation of Doug Davis, Chris Capuano, Tomo Ohka and Dave Bush for the first two weeks before needing a fifth starter on April 17 at Houston. That could be a reasonable target date for Sheets, assuming he has no more setbacks. Look for Yost to make his plans public in the next few days.
Sheets was bouncing around the clubhouse on Sunday, a good sign that he was thrilled with his bullpen session at rainy Maryvale Baseball Park, and notably snapped off 10-15 curveballs during eight-minutes on the mound. Overcoming the mental hurdle of that pitch -- arguably Sheets' best and the one on which he suffered his original injury last August -- is probably more vital to Sheets' comeback as his physical progress.
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