Results tagged ‘ LaTroy Hawkins ’

Hawkins nearing end of rehab run

The Triple-A Nashville Sounds are scheduled for a doubleheader in Omaha today, and it could be a big day for rehabbing Brewers reliever LaTroy Hawkins. He’s scheduled to pitch for the second straight day, and his next outing after that could be back with the Brewers.

Sunday would mark Hawkins’ fifth appearance on a Minor League rehabilitation assignment during which he’s been building strength in his surgically-repaired right shoulder. Hawkins had a rotator cuff and labrum repair last August, and at the end of Spring Training was topping out in the low 90 mph range.

Now his velocity is back, and Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said the Brewers would discuss reinstating Hawkins from the 15-day disabled list this week.

After beginning his rehab with three appearances with Class A Brevard County, Hawkins made his first appearance for Nashville on Saturday night and retired the first two hitters he faced before walking the next two and reaching his 20-pitch limit.

Left-hander Manny Parra, on the DL with a back injury, also pitched Saturday for Nashville and allowed two runs on four hits in 2 2/3 innings. He threw 49 pitches, 30 for strikes, and walked two batters with two strikeouts.

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Gallardo gets his work in

Reds Minor Leaguers got a heavy dose of the Brewers’ Major League pitching staff on Monday, when a lousy weather forecast prompted the Brewers to juggle their pitching plans. 
Yovani Gallardo threw 92 pitches in seven innings of a Triple-A game against Cincinnati to stay on schedule for his Opening Day assignment. In the Double-A game on an adjacent field, relievers LaTroy Hawkins, Takashi Saito, Brandon Kintzler and Sean Green all got in some work ahead of the rain. 
“It’s definitely a little different,” said Gallardo, who pitched on a side field at Maryvale Baseball Park in front of a few dozen fans. “But you still have the same things you want to work on. Getting to the pitch count is the important thing, too.”
Gallardo was particularly working on his change-up against Cincinnati’s Triple-A club, a pitch he’s tried to hone in recent seasons. He allowed four earned runs and six hits in seven innings, with two walks and seven strikeouts. 
He also executed a perfect sacrifice bunt, nearly hit a home run to left field and singled and scored from second base on a hit. As Triple-A manager Don Money waved Gallardo home, the half-dozen Brewers officials behind the screen stiffened. 
“I was not going to slide, I’ll be honest,” Gallardo said. “It was kind of surprising he sent me from second there.”
Gallardo scored on the play, then went immediately back to the mound because the Reds pitcher had hit his pitch limits. A Reds two-run rally began with a soft ground-ball single up the middle and included a bloop hit that went over shortstop Zelous Wheeler’s head. 
Still, Gallardo deemed the outing a success.
“Coming into spring I said I was going to throw more change-ups, and we tried to work on that,” he said. “I threw a lot here today. I feel a lot more comfortable with it now. I’m trusting it more. It’s going good.”
Gallardo has one more spring start before his March 31 season-opener in Cincinnati. 
“The last start of the spring, you treat it almost as if it were the regular season,” he said. 
Hawkins was very sharp in his Double-A “start,” allowing one hit and no runs in a 16-pitch inning. Saito followed and allowed two runs on three hits including a two-run double that bounced over third base. He struck out one batter and threw 18 pitches.
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Medical round-up: Lucroy, Hart, Gamel, Hawkins

Some medical updates from Brewers camp:
– Ron Roenicke confirmed that catcher Jonathan Lucroy could be ready for Opening Day if all goes according to plan in his recovery from a fractured right pinkie finger. A metal pin in Lucroy’s finger will come out on March 21, and Lucroy can begin hitting after that as the pain tolerates. 
“He threw to bases [on Saturday] without the splint on, and was good,” Roenicke said. “So really it’s just going to be a matter of gripping a bat, trying to get the flexibility back in his finger. That’s going to take a while. But everything else is good. He’s catching bullpens so his legs will be in shape.”
– Right fielder Corey Hart has been making significant progress in the past few days in his recovery from a left rib-cage strain, Roenicke said. Hart played catch, took grounders in the outfield and did core strengthening exercises on Saturday without issue.
“They’re going to try to step it up a little bit and put more on him, and see where he is,” Roenicke said. “He’s coming along pretty good. … In a couple of days, they’re hoping he can swing.”
– Third baseman/utility man/hitting prospect Mat Gamel was scheduled to take live batting practice for the first time on Sunday in Minor League camp. If it goes well, he could do it again Monday before slotting into Cactus League games. 
Gamel still has a chance to make the team, Roenicke said. But the fact he bats left-handed probably hurts his case — the Brewers already have Mark Kotsay, Craig Counsell and probably Chris Dickerson slated for bench duty — and it will be more difficult at this stage of spring for Gamel to demonstrate his defensive versatility because the regulars are playing deeper into games. 
“I know he can hit,” Roenicke said. “It’s just a matter of how he fits on our club.”
– A trio of relievers are making good progress. 
Reliever LaTroy Hawkins was “feeling great today” about his live patting practice on Saturday, Roenicke said, and will probably throw some simulated innings this week before debuting in a game. He’s coming back steadily from shoulder surgery.
Left-hander Mitch Stetter, who strained a muscle behind his shoulder early in camp, is scheduled to pitch Monday against the Giants after throwing a successful live batting practice session Friday.   
Another left-hander Manny Parra, was very close to getting back on the mound, Roenicke said. 
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Banged-up bullpen notes

Who knew that head athletic trainer Roger Caplinger would play such an important role in the Brewers’ assembling their 2011 bullpen?

Closer John Axford, set-up men Takashi Saito and LaTroy Hawkins and left-handed long man Manny Parra had all yet to make their Cactus League debuts as of Thursday morning because of various ailments, and hopefuls Pat Egan and Mitch Stetter were in the same camp. 
“It’s a little unusual for your bullpen guys, because they’re usually just throwing an inning,” manager Ron Roenicke said. 
At least all of those players were on the right track:
– Parra, who was slowed by some middle back stiffness, was to pitch Thursday afternoon against the A’s at Maryvale Baseball Park. 
– Axford was set back by a bout of food poisoning, an unfortunate side effect of his Valentine’s Day dinner with wife Nicole. The Brewers took a cautious approach with Axford while he regained strength, and he’s to debut against the Giants on Friday in Scottsdale, Ariz. 
– Hawkins (shoulder) and Saito (hip and hamstring) each threw bullpen sessions on Wednesday with no setbacks, manager Ron Roenicke said. 
It was Hawkins’ first mound work since major shoulder surgery last August, and he said the 20-pitch session went “great.” He won’t appear in games until mid-month at the earliest. Saito asked for his Cactus League debut to be pushed back because of tightness that he worried could lead to trouble with his right shoulder, like it did in 2010, so he won’t make his Brewers debut until Saturday against the Angels.
The issues were not limited to the established pitchers. 
 
Stetter, trying to regain the foothold in the organization that he had in 2009, when he made 71 appearances in the Majors, suffered a strained latissimus dorsi muscle behind his left shoulder prior to camp but is scheduled for a bullpen on Friday. 
The latest name to come up in Roenicke’s morning meetings with reporters was Egan’s. The 6-foot-8 righty has been slowed by tightness around his right hip, Roenicke said, but is expected to throw off a mound on Friday, perhaps against the Giants. Egan had a similar ailment last spring with the Orioles.
 
Egan is particularly interesting partly because he’s a Rule 5 Draft pick, and would have to stick on Milwaukee’s 25-man roster or be offered back to the Orioles.
Given he’s never pitched in the Majors, Egan might be a long shot for a bullpen that, barring future injuries, is full except for one spot. Right-handers Sean Green, Mike McClendon, Brandon Kintzler and Justin James are among the others vying to impress Roenicke and pitching coack Rick Kranitz in camp.
“I’m not concerned about them being ready to pitch [at the start of the season], but what I’m concerned about is if guys are trying to make the team and they’re hurt, then, yes, they need to be out there to throw as much as they can,” Roenicke said. “[Egan] would certainly be one of them. Any time you have a Rule 5 guy, you have to see as much of him as you can.”
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Morning Brew: Saito, Hawkins, starting rotation

Some notes from the Brewers’ clubhouse this morning:

Saito-toss.jpg

You can add Takashi Saito to the list of Brewers being very cautious with minor medical matters. Saito was supposed to make his unofficial Brewers debut on Wednesday against the Cubs, but he requested the outing be pushed to Saturday against the Angels. 
On Wednesday, the 41-year-old Saito will throw a bullpen session instead. 
“Right now, I’m kind of tight in my hamstring and my hip,” Saito said through translator Kosuke Inaji. “I don’t think it’s that big of a deal, but last year when I hurt my shoulder, I feel that the reason was i hurt my hamstring and tried to throw harder with my shoulder. 
“It’s still early in Spring Training, so I want to be careful right now.”
The schedule shift means Saito is on pace for nine innings of Cactus League work this spring instead of 10. He said as long as he gets into eight games, he’ll be ready for Opening Day. 
Right-hander LaTroy Hawkins is scheduled for a bullpen on Wednesday, his first mound work since undergoing right shoulder surgery last season. Hawkins would have to throw a series of bullpens, then live batting practice before appearing in a Spring Training game. 
If he continues to progress on schedule, Hawkins could pitch in a game by the middle of the month. He’s aiming to be ready for the Brewers’ March 31 season-opener. 
Zack Greinke makes his Brewers debut against the White Sox today in Glendale, Ariz., one of my favorite spring venues, maybe because I got to attend a game here last spring as a fan. We prodded him again today, but manager Ron Roenicke still was not ready to reveal his plans for the starting rotation. 
Asked when he would be ready to make public his intentions, Roenicke said, “I imagine it will come pretty soon.”
As I wrote yesterday, it sounds as if he will use left-hander Randy Wolf in Game 3 of the season to separate him from the other lefty, Chris Narveson, who will be fifth out of the chute. That leaves Greinke, Yovani Gallardo and Shaun Marcum to fill Games 1, 2 and 4. The fourth game is a big one because it’s the Brewers home opener, and Roenicke made clear he views that as a prestigious assignment.
Might he have to sell it as such?
“I may,” he said. 
Roenicke has had conversations with two of the pitchers about his thinking, and has said before that their desires could play a role in how they line up. 
“I want to hear how they respond,” Roenicke, who declined to reveal details of those talks. He conceded that someone is bound to be disappointed, considering Greinke, Yovani Gallardo and Shaun Marcum all started on Opening Day last season. 
“But that’s good,” Roenicke said. “If guys are upset about not pitching that opener, that’s good. Any time you have guys that want the ball all the time, that’s great to have.” 
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Brewers say Hart out two weeks

ANOTHER UPDATE postgame — Ron Roenicke’s understanding is that Hart should be back in game shape in two weeks, not that he’ll be shut down for two weeks. There’s a distinction there. The bottom line is that oblique injuries are tough to predict, so let’s just see how Hart progresses.

UPDATE at 2:10 p.m. CT — The Brewers just announced that Hart would engage in “rest and recovery” for the next two weeks, so that’s a somewhat more serious take on his injury. Here’s an update to the earlier note:
Brewers right fielder Corey Hart will miss about two weeks of exhibition games while recovering from a strained muscle along his left rib cage, the club announced Monday. 
That marked a somewhat more serious diagnosis than the one Hart gave a few hours earlier, after he was examined by Dr. Craig Young at Maryvale Baseball Park. Hart said he only expected to be shut down “a few more days.” 
“I think it’s hard to tell exactly how long it’s going to be,” manager Ron Roenicke said. “But [assistant GM Gord Ash] said there is a strain there, and he wants to be overprotective of it. I was a little bummed when I heard two weeks.” 
Roenicke’s understanding is that Hart could be back playing in games in two weeks, not that he would be entirely shut down for that entire period. 
Hart was hurt during a throwing drill Saturday. He said it was the first time he’d tweaked an oblique muscle in his career. 
“[Young] said we would probably push it a little harder if we were in the middle of the season, but there’s no reason to push it right now,” Hart said. “We’re going to try easing in so we don’t have any setbacks at all.”
Hart’s duties on Monday were limited to receiving treatment in the training room. He was among the handful players on the injury report as the Brewers kicked off their exhibition schedule:
– Relievers John Axford (illness), Manny Parra (back), Zach Braddock (blister), LaTroy Hawkins (shoulder) and Mitch Stetter (undisclosed) were not on the list to pitch against the Giants of Cubs. Axford suffered a bout of food poisoning early in camp and has slowly been working back. Parra had some minor back stiffness last week and was scheduled to throw a live batting practice session on Monday. Braddock had a small blister last week that should not keep him out long, and Hawkins remains on schedule in his return from last year’s shoulder surgery. Manager Ron Roencike said only that Stetter was being brought along slowly this spring.
– Top pitching prospect Mark Rogers was very encouraged by a throwing session on Sunday and hopes to get back on the mound by mid-week. Rogers, who has a long injury history, shut down a live batting practice session last week because of some stiffness in his right shoulder. 
“I felt great yesterday playing long toss,” he said. “It’s the best I’ve felt all spring. We’re slowly working our way back into it. I’m sure a bullpen is in the near future. I’d guess in the next few days. So far, it’s responded better than I expected it to.” 
It’s difficult to sit around with the exhibition schedule underway. 
“I’ve got the itch,” Rogers said. “I want to pitch.”
– Infielder Mat Gamel remains restricted from hitting because of his own rib-cage strain. He’s been able to take part in fielding drills during his layoff. Catcher Jonathan Lucroy is out with a fractured right pinkie finger. He has a doctor’s appointment for late this week to set a plan for rehab.
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Hawkins talks about joining Twitterverse

LaTroy Hawkins wasn’t going to let fellow Brewers reliever John Axford have all the fun on Twitter. 
Axford lost his status as the only active Brewer on the social networking site when he unmasked the previously-private Hawkins (@Adidas219) over the weekend. Hawkins grew from fewer than 80 followers to nearly 800 by Monday morning and plans to use his page to spread inspirational and spiritual messages. He’s also figuring out how to communicate with his fans. 
“I saw Axford having fun,” Hawkins said. “Brewers fans are awesome, so there won’t be all of that negative stuff you might get other places, which is cool. It’s all positive stuff for me, every day. I’ll post inspirational messages or something from the Bible. 
“If there’s something negative, I’ll just block. There’s so much negative in the world that we need some positive reinforcement.”
Hawkins’ name has been joined Axford’s (@JohnAxford) on MLB.com’s list of verified Major Leaguers on Twitter.
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Hawkins undergoes shoulder surgery

Brewers reliever LaTroy Hawkins underwent season-ending shoulder surgery in Los Angeles on Friday with Dr. Lewis Yocum, who debrided — or cut frayed tissue away from — Hawkins’ labrum and rotator cuff. Hawkins shoulder will be immobilized for seven days before he begins physical therapy at home in Dallas. 

No word yet on whether the procedure would affect Hawkins’ preparation for 2011. He signed a two-year, $7.5 million contract with the Brewers in December. 
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Hawkins to have shoulder surgery Friday

MILWAUKEE — Following the results of another MRI on his right shoulder Friday, veteran reliever LaTroy Hawkins has opted for arthroscopic surgery to repair his rotator cuff and labrum.

 

Hawkins, 37, will leave the team Sunday to fly home and spend some time with his family before flying Wednesday to Los Angeles, where he will have Dr. Lewis Yocum perform the scope on his shoulder.

“It’s scope, but he said if he sees anything else, he’s got to fix it,” Hawkins said. “We’re praying and anticipating he won’t have to do anything else but just clean up. When I wake up on Friday, I’ll know exactly what he had to do.”

The recovery process for Hawkins will vary depending on whether the arthroscopic procedure is sufficient in repairing the “fraying” on his rotator cuff and labrum. If it is just a scope, Hawkins said he could be throwing again before Thanksgiving.

“If he has to put a stitch in there or something,” Hawkins said, “it’ll be a lot longer.”

Hawkins, 37, has struggled with shoulder issues all season, which has kept him on the disabled list for much of the season. The first indication of injury came in Spring Training, when Hawkins reported tightness in his shoulder after pitching on March 11.

That issue seemed to have resolved itself shortly thereafter, as Hawkins was lights out through his first four appearances of the regular season. Hawkins was tagged for seven runs on six hits in his next two outings before giving up just one run in his next six appearances.

Finally, after giving up a walk-off grand slam to Andre Ethier in one-third inning of work at Dodger Stadium on May 6, the Brewers sent Hawkins to the disabled list with right shoulder weakness.

Hawkins remained on the DL until pitching again on July 30 in Houston. He pitched five times after his return, including an ugly, one-third inning, three-run, four-hit outing in Chicago as the Brewers lost, 15-3, to the Cubs.

“I threw that pitch in Spring Training, I felt tight,” Hawkins said. “Then I recovered again and I threw the ball well, and then [went on the DL]. Just like I recovered this time. It breaks back down again.”

Hawkins said he planned to rehab initially in Dallas, where he said the Brewers had a “guy they work with in Dallas that’s going to work with me.” After working in Dallas, he planned to be back in September, to spend time with the club and let trainer Roger Caplinger look at the progress on his right shoulder.

Regardless of the length of recovery, Hawkins now has his eyes set on pitching in 2011 the way he was expected to this season when he signed with the Brewers.

“If we get it right and I can be back next year and pitch the way I’m accustomed to pitching — being out there and being able to be used once every three days, that’s not what they signed me for,” Hawkins said. “They signed me to pitch the way I’ve been able to pitch, three out of four days, five out of seven. I just haven’t been able to do that.”

– Jordan Schelling, Associate Reporter

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Another MRI for Hawkins

Brewers reliever LaTroy Hawkins had another MRI scan of his balky right shoulder on Friday and was still deciding whether to undergo exploratory surgery to look for the source of stiffness in the joint.
That decision could have been made as early as Friday night, after Hawkins conferred with Brewers physician Dr. William Raasch to go over the latest test results. Hawkins also underwent a contrast MRI on Monday in Los Angeles with noted orthopedist Dr. Lewis Yocum that revealed only normal wear and tear. 
If Friday’s scan was similarly inconclusive, then surgery could be necessary. Hawkins was not available after the Brewers’ 10-6 win over the Padres to discuss the outcome. 
“We just want to be sure before we make a decision,” Hawkins said before the game. 
Hawkins is in his second stint on the disabled list with what the Brewers have described as “weakness” in his shoulder. In the first season of a two-year, $7.5 million contract, Hawkins has an 8.44 ERA in 18 appearances. 
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