The 2022 season for the Detroit Tigers has already featured more injuries than we can ever remember in a season, and it’s not even June. The club had some good news on several players making progress toward a return to action over the past two days, but dropped another injury bombshell on Thursday afternoon.
Right-hander Matt Manning has been on the injured list since April 20 with shoulder inflammation. After two initial rehab starts for the Toledo Mud Hens that seemed to show good progress, things have gone downhill from there. Manning exited what was supposed to be his final rehab start back on May 19 with what was described as light-headedness caused by dehydration. Another attempt two days ago ended after Manning fell apart in the second inning and was lifted due to pitch count restrictions after throwing 30 pitches in the inning and only recording two outs.
In the moment, Tigers manager A.J. Hinch didn’t seem happy with the organizational protocol involved. He seemed even less thrilled when announcing on Thursday that Matt Manning had “come clean” about ongoing soreness in the front of his shoulder, described as bicep tendinitis. It doesn’t sound like Manning is going to be pitching for the Tigers for quite some time. Hinch has spoken at length in the past about insisting players be open and honest about these things, so presumably he is particularly unhappy about how this played out.
Matt Manning “came clean” and acknowledged soreness after Tuesday’s rehab start, A.J. Hinch said. He has bicep tendinitis and will not throw for foreseeable future.— Jason Beck (@beckjason) May 26, 2022
In Lakeland, Casey Mize hasn’t been doing anything other than plyo, but the hope is he starts a throwing program by next week— Cody Stavenhagen (@CodyStavenhagen) May 26, 2022
As for right-hander Casey Mize, he’s still just doing light workouts in Lakeland and hasn’t been cleared to throw. Mize suffered an elbow strain in mid-April, and felt a recurrence of the issue in his lone attempt at a rehab start with the Mud Hens on May 12.
On the plus side, top prospect Riley Greene and shortstop prospect Ryan Kreidler have participated in intrasquad games over the past week. Both are now set to join the Low-A Lakeland Flying Tigers for rehab games as early as Friday. Greene will no doubt need some time to get up to speed, and as he’s never faced major league pitching, should require some outings for the Triple-A Toledo Mud Hens to get as prepared as possible for his eventual call-up. Kreidler wasn’t exactly tearing it up for the Hens prior to his injury, so presumably he’ll land in Toledo for the time being once his rehab work is completed.
Left-hander Tyler Alexander also seems to be making good progress, though we’ll count on nothing at this point. Alexander has thrown live BP in Lakeland and the hope is that he’ll be ready for a rehab assignment with the Mud Hens early next week.
Eduardo Rodriguez also seems to be progressing well, but injuries like oblique or intracostal strains can be difficult to treat. He’s building up his throwing progression to test the state of the injury.
Eduardo Rodriguez played catch today with no symptoms reported. He'll need to stretch out to 150 feet before getting back on mound.— Jason Beck (@beckjason) May 26, 2022
"Once we get him on the mound, we can pick up the pace pretty quickly because of the limited time that he's been down," Hinch said.
Finally, outfielder Victor Reyes is back to running after suffering his second quad strain of the year to his right quad, after only one at-bat since returning from a left quad strain in late April. Hopefully the quads will cooperate this time. Reliever Jose Cisnero is back throwing off a mound again, and seems bound for rehab outings fairly soon. However, there remain no updates in outfielder Austin Meadows progress in dealing with an inner ear infection that has him battling vertigo.
We can only hope Meadows will be alright soon, and that this nightmarish parade of injuries will abate in time to at least see what this roster can do at something close to full power.