Coghlan to play Minor League games
JUPITER, Fla. — Claiming that his right shoulder isn’t fully healthy, Chris Coghlan will be playing center field in Minor League games for at least a little while.
Coghlan has been dealing with inflammation and tendinitis in his rotator cuff, and he was attempting to play in back-to-back games in Grapefruit League action.
Beginning on Thursday, Coghlan was set to play in center on a back field at the Roger Dean Stadium complex. He will still work on the timing of his jumps and reads on balls in the outfield. But he’s been instructed not to make any strenuous throws.
Whether Coghlan will be ready for Opening Night on April 1 remains to be seen. But playing in Minor League games would give the Marlins the option to retro-active the 25-year-old on the disabled list, should he not be ready for the season opener.
“We’re going to be able to play the outfield down there,” Coghlan said. “I can still play the field, but I told [manager Edwin Rodriguez], ‘I can’t keep going out there and babying my arm.’ I’ve got to get healthy.”
Coghlan said he had an MRI on his shoulder about 10 days ago. On Wednesday, in a Grapefruit League game with Tampa Bay, there was a play that could have tested Coghlan’s shoulder.
It came in the sixth inning on Matt Joyce’s fly ball to center with Elliot Johnson on third.
Johnson didn’t tag and go, and Coghlan simply threw the ball back to the infield instead of throwing all the way to the plate.
That throw as telling, showing that Coghlan’s shoulder isn’t right.
“I could have probably made a little bit [stronger throw], but I’m not 100 percent,” Coghlan said. “I couldn’t throw it all the way home and try to throw that guy out. I told [Rodriguez], ‘I can’t just keep on going out there and doing that.’ He said, ‘I totally understand.’ “
Coghlan also is recovering from surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee. His knee is doing fine, as evident by the triple he hit on Wednesday.
Right now, it’s getting his arm strength ready for the season.
Emilio Bonifacio started in center field on Thursday against the Cardinals.
— Joe Frisaro