Updated May 17
I lost a huge part of my daily self-amusement routine when it was announced last week that Kendrys Morales would miss the 2011 season. Not that I wished him ill -- to restate the obvious, baseball is a lot more fun when everybody's on the field -- but I was fascinated by his fits-and-starts recovery from a moronically inflicted broken ankle. Or, more specifically, the way it was chronicled, rehab milestone after rehab milestone.
First Morales was taking some cuts in the cage. Before long, he graduated to batting practice. Then he progressed to "straight-line running" and running "on flat ground." A few days after that he "ran on grass" and, later, "in spikes." He ran the bases "aggressively" and ran "10 sprints of 110 feet each." Then he experienced the first of many setbacks, when he "felt something" while "jogging." So it was back to the "treadmill" for him. After repeating this cycle several times, he "threw" in the "towel."
Morales' plight was the position-player version of the endless Brandon Webb rehab from shoulder surgery. Over the past two years, this has pinballed between throwing sessions in a variety of settings (in the bullpen, on flat ground, off a mound), none of which amounted to much. Morales had replaced Webb as the poster boy for baseball injury despair; now we're back to monitoring Webb's endless recovery. Within a week, we'll hear something about a "good bullpen session" in which he "threw all his pitches." Then he'll bump his shoulder getting into a cab and the whole process will repeat itself. If it's exhausting for us to follow, imagine how much fun it must be for him.
Anyway, get well soon, Kendrys and Brandon. Get well soon, everybody everywhere. Put your best foot forward, literally.