Blog Entry

Britton heads to camp with shoulder soreness

Posted on: February 15, 2012 10:38 am
Edited on: February 15, 2012 11:06 am
By Matt Snyder

Spring training hasn't started yet, and we're here to pass along some potentially bad news to Orioles fans already. Left-handed starting pitcher Zach Britton -- who figured to be the staff ace -- heads to camp "limited in his activities" due to a sore left shoulder, reports This is the same shoulder problem that landed him on the disabled list last August.

"We are currently monitoring Zach Britton," general manager Dan Duquette said in a statement released by the club. "He has already reported to spring training and is scheduled to begin his throwing progression this Friday."

Now, let's not overreact. Opening day is a long way away. Camp hasn't even started yet -- though it does in a matter of days. It's entirely possible Britton strengthens his throwing shoulder through the spring and is ready to take the ball opening day for the Orioles.

It's just that hearing about a starting pitcher in the middle of February having a sore shoulder hardly breeds confidence in his ability to head up the rotation this season. It's even more troubling that this is an injury that has lingered for six months, encompassing the entire offseason. I'll say this, he won't be finding his way onto my fantasy baseball team.

Britton, 24, went 11-11 with a 4.61 ERA and 1.45 WHIP in his rookie year for the Orioles. He definitely wore down as the season went on, possibly a product of his sore shoulder, possibly just because he was a rookie. He was 5-2 with a 2.14 ERA after nine starts, for example, then he closed the season with a 5.85 ERA in September.

Still, Britton appeared to be the Orioles' best pitcher heading into the spring, and now this news puts a bit of a black cloud over pitchers and catchers reporting. The good news, as I outlined in the AL East position battles, is the Orioles have almost a dozen starting pitching options (no exaggeration). So there's that.

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Category: MLB

Since: Aug 24, 2006
Posted on: February 15, 2012 8:54 pm

Britton heads to camp with shoulder soreness

Britton has one of the better arms in MLB.The only question in my mind is which SP will blow his young arm up first-Strasberg or Britton.I say Strasberg.He makes the big bucks & does pretty much as he pleases.His only hope is to be traded to a team that cares about their young starters.Washington isn't one of those teams.As for Britton-TJ surgury within 2 years.

Since: Jun 3, 2010
Posted on: February 15, 2012 1:09 pm

Britton heads to camp with shoulder soreness

Who is?

Hammel, Matusz, Arrieta, Tillman, Hunter? They were all worse last year. Chen and Wada are new to America.

Please provide an alternative. I actually thought Britton is obvious as the opening day starter if he's healthy.

- Matt

Since: Oct 22, 2007
Posted on: February 15, 2012 12:42 pm

Britton heads to camp with shoulder soreness

Britton was the O's staff ace. This is news to this O's fan.  Now while he did put up a decent, not a great, rookie year. He was no way going to be the O's opening day starter.

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