Cleveland Indians outfielder Leonys Martin had a bacterial infection that attacked his organs and was life-threatening, but he is in stable condition and improving, Indians president Chris Antonetti said.
Antonetti addressed the team Monday and said that Martin, who has been hospitalized at Cleveland Clinic for nearly a week, is recovering and his outlook is good, but that “progress will be measured in weeks, not days.”
Antonetti said that Martin had a bacterial infection that entered his bloodstream and damaged his internal organs. Antonetti said the organs started to shut down, and it was “severe.”
“Thankfully, he’s made a lot of progress in the last 24 to 36 hours,” Antonetti said. “He’s regained a lot of the organ function. We’re optimistic. He’s on a good path right now, and we’re hopeful that he’ll have a full recovery. But he’s got a long path to get back to full health in front of him. It’s going to take some time.”
The Indians acquired Martin, 30, from the Tigers on July 31 just before the non-waiver deadline. He became ill last Tuesday night and did not play Wednesday. On Thursday, the Indians placed him on the 10-day disabled list. On Friday, some Indians players wrote Martin’s name on their hats, and manager Terry Francona asked fans to pray for him.
“What I would say, if you believe in saying prayers and things like that, keep him in your thoughts,” Francona said.
In six games with the Indians, Martin is hitting .333 (5-for-15) with two homers and four RBIs.
Antonetti said he did not know whether Martin would play again this season.
“I haven’t even thought about baseball,” Antonetti said. “He’s got a long path to get to full health in front of him. It’s going to take him some time, but we’re in a much better spot today than we were 24 to 36 hours ago.”
Miguel Cabrera is an all-time great, one of the most lethal right-handed batters ever with four batting titles, two home run championships and a Triple Crown season. You have to wonder, however, if we’ll ever see Super Scary Miggy again.
Cabrera ruptured a biceps tendon on a swing in Tuesday’s 6-4 loss to the Twins and he’ll require season-ending surgery. His season is over after 38 games and only three home runs. Once one of the iron men of the game, Cabrera averaged 157 games per season from 2004 to 2014 without landing on the DL. But check out his list of injuries since 2014:
• 2014: Played 159 games and hit .313 with 25 home runs but had surgery after the season to repair a stress fracture in his foot and bone spurs in his ankle.
• 2015: Landed on the DL for the first time, missing six weeks because of a calf strain and playing only 119 games (he still hit .338 to win his fourth batting title, although he hit only 18 home runs).
• 2017: Bothered by back problems all season and played 130 games, hitting .249 with 16 home runs.
• 2018: Missed time earlier because of a hamstring issue and now he’s out for the season. While he managed to hit .301 while in the lineup, he never did find his power stroke.
Cabrera is now 35 years old — turning 36 next April — with a body struggling to
handle the rigors of playing baseball every day. There is still ability there when healthy, as witnessed by a strong 2016 season when he hit .316 with 38 home runs, but will he be able to tap into that ability in the future? The worrisome aspect for the Tigers? Cabrera’s future salaries: $30 million per season in 2019, 2020 and 2021, then $32 million per year in 2022 and 2023… and then a $30 million vesting option (or an $8 million buyout) for 2024, and a $30 million vesting option for 2025.
That’s a minimum of $162 million owed an aging superstar who probably moves to DH next season. Look, maybe Cabrera bounces back and this won’t end up as bad as the Albert Pujols contract. He’s a better hitter than Pujols, who turned into a one-dimensional slugger in his mid-30s, with declining batting averages and worsening control of the strike zone. Cabrera still had a .397 OBP, so there’s some hope he’ll age better if the body does.
Still, when Cabrera signed the extension back in March 2014 — when he still had two seasons remaining on his contract at the time — it was obviously a risky bet given the deal would, at minimum, go through Cabrera’s age-40 season. The contract was widely criticized in part because there was no need to do the contract when he was still two years away from free agency. If the Tigers had waited even one year, they would have witnessed the first signs of Cabrera’s body breaking down.
That extension came courtesy of an owner now deceased and a GM no longer here. The current regime has to work with the ramifications.
Super Nola: Aaron Nola’s ERA has been below 3.00 all season. After two abbreviated five-inning outings to begin the season, he has pitched at least six innings in each start since, which might not impress the old-timers but qualifies as a workhorse by today’s standard. He has given up more than three runs only once, and that was just four runs. He has given up only five home runs in 91 innings, despite playing his home run games in a great home run park.
Nola improved to 8-2 with a 2.27 ERA after fanning 10 in 6⅔ innings in a 5-4 victory over the Rockies on Tuesday, a game made close when Colorado rallied for three runs in the ninth. The game ended when Seranthony Dominguez fanned Nolan Arenado on a checked swing, a call that Arenado was not happy about.
Here’s Nola fanning Charlie Blackmon with his wipeout curveball:
Nola has always had the curve, but the continued improvement of his changeup has taken him to a new level. Talking about the changeup after the game on MLB Network, Nola explained it was a pitch he didn’t use much at LSU because he threw his curve so much, but he started focusing on it a lot more in spring training in 2017. Indeed, his confidence in the changeup can be seen through his usage:
Oh, Haniger had two home runs as the Mariners beat the Angels to overcome Mike Trout’s two home runs. Although this is a pretty awesome little factoid: Trout became the first player to have consecutive multihomer games at Safeco Field — yes, no Mariner has ever done it.
Mad Max: The Max Muncy show continues as the Dodgers pounded Bartolo Colon and the Rangers:
That’s four games in a row with a home run for Muncy. His OPS is over 1.000. Baseball is amazing.
Braves slam hapless Mets: Ozzie Albies had the big blow with a grand slam to cap a six-run sixth inning as the Braves beat the Mets 8-2. This play kind of sums up the Mets’ season:
The closest races are at catcher, where Gary Sanchez leads Wilson Ramos, and first base, with Jose Abreu over Mitch Moreland. I thought shortstop might be closer, but Manny Machado has a 110,000-vote lead over Francisco Lindor, with Didi Gregorius and Carlos Correa a couple of thousand votes behind Lindor.
Abreu is the interesting player in a weak crop at first base. He’s really the only deserving starter, based on 2018 performance plus previous track record, unless you want to give a legacy vote to Miguel Cabrera or Albert Pujols. If he does win the vote, he’d be the first White Sox position player to start since Frank Thomas in 1995.
Detroit Tigers general manager Al Avila joined Buster Olney on the Baseball Tonight podcast to discuss the drafting of Casey Mize, being honest with his players in regards to the rebuild and his thoughts on the success of some former Tigers.
The Detroit Tigers selected University of Texas second baseman Kody Clemens on Tuesday with the first pick of the third round (79th overall) in the MLB amateur draft.
He is a son of former major league pitcher Roger Clemens.
Kody Clemens has hit .346 with 21 home runs and 68 RBIs for the Longhorns this season, his junior year. He was limited to being the designated hitter for most of his sophomore season after undergoing Tommy John surgery in August 2016.
The Longhorns are currently in the NCAA baseball tournament. They will play Tennessee Tech in the Austin Super Regional, starting Saturday.
Roger Clemens won an American League MVP award, seven Cy Young Awards and 354 games during his 24-season career.
The Tigers opened the MLB draft on Monday by selecting Auburn right-hander Casey Mize with the No. 1 overall pick.