Results tagged ‘ Matt Lindstrom ’

Calero back from DL

On Thursday, the transaction became official as reliever Kiko Calero was reinstated off the disabled list. The right-hander had been out since June 18 with shoulder inflammation.

Reliever Tim Wood, who was doing a nice job, was optioned back to Triple-A. Even though Wood was sent back down, the Marlins saw promise from the right-hander. He likely will get called back up in the second half.

Calero’s return helps solidify the bullpen, which is starting to shape up. The 34-year-old has appeared in 36 games, and he will help out in a setup role, either in the seventh or eighth innings.

The Marlins also recently added veteran Brendan Donnelly. More veteran relief help promises to be on the way after the All-Star Break. On June 26, the Marlins signed right-hander Scott Williamson to a Minor League deal. Williamson last pitched in the big leagues in 2007, and he’s getting himself back into shape in Jupiter.

Shortly after the All-Star Break, closer Matt Lindstrom (right elbow sprain) may be ready to return.

Luis Ayala, who also signed a Minor League contract recently, is another relief option.

The Marlins open a four-game set with the Diamondbacks on Thursday in Arizona. In the final two games at San Francisco, Florida’s bullpen worked only one inning, so they should be rested.

— Joe Frisaro


Wood offered needed relief

Not to be overlooked in the Marlins’ 7-4 loss to the Pirates on Friday night were three shutdown relief innings from Tim Wood, a recent callup from Triple-A New Orleans.

“He went three innings and 36 pitches,” manager Fredi Gonzalez said. “He was very effective with his pitches. He really saved us. He really, really saved us, picking up those three innings. And he kept us in the ball game.”

Because of a 45-minute rain delay in the bottom of the third inning, starter Chris Volstad didn’t return for the fourth inning. That meant the bullpen needed to pick up some extra innings. Two days before, long reliever Burke Badenhop, tossed 2 2/3 innings in relief of Josh Johnson on Wednesday against the Nationals.

Long relief isn’t a role that Wood normally handles. But because Badenhop wasn’t available, Wood assumed long relief duties on Friday.

It marked the most innings he’s thrown since he returned from Tommy John ligament replacement surgery to his right elbow in 2006.

“I’ve made spot starts, but I didn’t go three innings,” Wood said on Saturday.

Friday was Wood’s third MLB appearance since being brought up.

He retired the first eight batters he faced before allowing a single to Adam LaRoche followed by a walk to Garrett Jones. Wood was able to escape the jam by getting Andy LaRoche to tap a ground ball to shortstop.

Admittedly, Wood felt fatigued in his third straight inning.

“I was definitely getting tired,” he said. “I was getting winded a little bit. I was able to bear down and make some pitches.”

Wood held the score at 4-0 after six innings.

The Marlins are in need of bullpen help due to some injuries. Closer Matt Lindstrom (sprained right elbow) and Kiko Calero (right shoulder inflammation) are out.

The Marlins have come to terms with veteran reliever Luis Ayala to a Minor League contract. Ayala will get some work at Triple-A New Orleans before joining the club.

Lindstrom threw off flat ground for the second straight day, and he could be back shortly after the All-Star Break. Calero, who is scheduled to pitch in a rehab assignment game for Class A Jupiter on Saturday, may be ready to join the team late next week at Arizona.

Wood is striving to help out whenever he is called upon.

“I’m noticing that you have to throw strikes,” he said of how to achieve big league success. “You’ve got to be ahead in the count. You can’t fall behind and be in fastball counts. These guys are professional hitters. They don’t miss fastballs in fastball counts.”

— Joe Frisaro



Lindstrom throwing, Kiko close

Friday was an active day for Marlins pitchers on the disabled list.

Closer Matt Lindstrom threw off flat ground for about 10 minutes. It’s the first time the right-hander is tossing a ball since he went on the DL with a right elbow sprain on June 24.

“I felt better than I thought I was going to,” Lindstrom said. “It was coming out of my hand pretty good for being 10 days off.”

Lindstrom is scheduled to continue throwing daily. When the Marlins head to San Francisco after Sunday’s game, the right-hander expects to stay in South Florida. He expects to continue his throwing program at the team’s Roger Dean complex in Jupiter, Fla.

Lindstrom hasn’t ruled out being activated shortly after the All-Star Break.

Reliever Kiko Calero, on the disabled list since June 21, is slated to throw in rehab assignment games for Class A Jupiter on Saturday and Monday. If all goes well, Calero could rejoin the team in Arizona. The Marlins open a four-game set with the Diamondbacks on July 9.

Starter Anibal Sanchez, out with a right shoulder sprain since June 4, is slated to throw a light bullpen session on Saturday. The Marlins aren’t pushing it with Sanchez. There is no time line as to when he may be back.

Not much has changed in the status of utility man Alfredo Amezaga, who has been resting a bone bruise to his left knee since May 21.

Amezaga visited Dr. Richard Steadman in Vail, Co., on Wednesday. The diagnosis remains a bone bruise, and Amezaga has been advised to keep resting.

— Joe Frisaro


Carpooling to park

The past couple of days, Matt Lindstrom has been taking Scott Olsen to the ballpark.

The reason is simple. Lindstrom, the Marlins closer who is on the disabled list, is living in the condo owned by Olsen in Aventura.

The Marlins traded Olsen, along with Josh Willingham, to the Nationals in the offseason for Emilio Bonifacio.

Olsen is keeping his South Florida place, and he worked out an arrangement for Lindstrom to live there during the season.

The two had a mixup on Monday in getting tot he ballpark. Lindstrom was supposed to take Olsen to the stadium. But because Lindstrom is on the disabled list, he went to the park early for treatment.

Olsen, who didn’t rent a car during the series, was unaware that Lindstrom was already at the stadium. He was starting that night for the Nationals. He called Lindstrom and said, “Dude, where are you?”

“I’m on a rehab schedule,” Lindstrom said. “My schedule is different than his.”

Olsen ended up calling Ricky Nolasco, who ironically was pitching against him for Florida. Nolasco lives close by, so he drove Olsen to the stadium. Olsen and Nolasco are very close friends, and they rode together for a game where they faced each other.

Lindstrom did take Olsen home after Monday’s game.

— Joe Frisaro


Lindstrom's road to recovery

There is a chance Matt Lindstrom could begin a throwing routine as early as Friday.

Lindstrom had his right elbow re-examined by the Marlins medical staff on Monday, and some of the inflammation in his throwing arm is subsiding. He is encouraged by his progress thus far.

The Marlins placed Lindstrom on the disabled list on June 24 with a right elbow sprain. He is expected to be out four to six weeks. When he starts throwing, it will be basically catch off flat ground, and eventually he’d progress back to throwing off the mound.

Lindstrom has appeared in 32 games, and he has 14 saves in 16 chances. However, of late, he’s struggled with his command. In 29 innings pitched, he’s struck out 26 while walking 20.

For about three weeks prior to going on the DL, he felt some discomfort in his forearm and elbow.

With Lindstrom on the disabled list, manager Fredi Gonzalez is mixing and matching on his closer.

Leo Nunez collected the save in Monday’s 4-2 win over Washington. Nunez, however, faced one batter in the inning, but he recorded the final out when Josh Willingham lined a fly ball to center field.

Dan Meyer opened the ninth inning, and the left-hander recorded two outs, but also yielded two singles. Meyer has one save on the season, while Nunez has two.

— Joe Frisaro



Nunez will get closer look

Dan Meyer got to experience the thrill of closing on Wednesday night. But what about Thursday? What if a save situation arises again, would the left-hander get the ball?

Maybe not, because that would mean he is throwing in three straight games. Also, the Marlins are leaning toward giving right-hander Leo Nunez, who has been regularly working the eighth inning, the chance to close.

“When Nunez is ready to go, I think we’ll give him an opportunity to do it,” Gonzalez said. “Or Meyer. Maybe Nunie goes two days in a row, and Danny goes the next day. We’ve got at least four weeks to figure it out and use both of those guys.”

Nunez was unavailable in Wednesday’s 5-2 win over the Orioles because of a right ankle sprain. The team is being cautious with him. But all things being equal, Nunez should get most of the saves chances now that Matt Lindstrom is on the disabled list with a right elbow sprain.

Lindstrom has been told not to throw for about four weeks, and he could be out as long as six weeks.

— Joe Frisaro


Lindstrom on disabled list

The Marlins on Wednesday afternoon placed right-hander Matt Lindstrom on the 15-day disabled list with a right elbow sprain.

The hard-throwing right-hander is on a no-throw status for four weeks. Manager Fredi Gonzalez said the team would mix and match the closer spot. Leo Nunez, Dan Meyer and Brian Sanches are closer options.

Replacing Lindstrom is right-hander Chris Leroux, who was called up from Double-A Jacksonville.

Late after Tuesday night’s 7-6 win in 12 innings over the Orioles, Lindstrom said he felt soreness in his forearm area, and it affected the command of his slider. Lindstrom was throwing 98 mph.

Lindstrom struggled in the ninth inning on Tuesday. He entered with Florida ahead, 6-3, but with two outs and no one on, he allowed four straight singles. Lindstrom was relieved by Sanches, who allowed the game-tying single.

Nunez also is dealing with a sprained ankle, but he said on Wednesday that he is ready to pitch.

— Joe Frisaro


Lindstrom dealing with adversity

No one can accuse Matt Lindstrom of ducking the issues.

After he allowed four straight singles with two outs and no one on in the ninth inning on Tuesday, the Marlins closer was sitting at his locker waiting for reporters.

The hard-throwing right-hander has been a standup player from the time he joined the Marlins in 2007. Right now, he’s going through a difficult stretch.

In the month of June, Lindstrom’s ERA is 7.56 — seven earned runs in 8 1/3 innings. While the Marlins beat the Orioles, 7-6, in 12 innings on Tuesday, Lindstrom was upset at himself for not being able to record the final out in the ninth inning.

He entered with a three-run lead, but the Orioles did all their damage with two outs. Manager Fredi Gonzalez replaced Lindstrom with Brian Sanches with a runner on third. Sanches was seeking his first MLB save, but he allowed the game-tying single, setting up extra innings.

“It’s difficult to get that 27th out,” Gonzalez said. “We’re going to keep running [Lindstrom] out there.”

Having a bad outing or two is nothing new to anyone in the big leagues. On Sunday, Lindstrom faced a similar situation in a 6-5 win over the Yankees. He recorded two quick outs to New York, and then gave up two runs, before working out of the jam, stranding a runner at third.

“It’s a tough growing process, that’s for sure, especially when you get the first two outs like that,” Lindstrom said.

Typically, when a player struggles as much as Lindstrom, it makes one wonder if he is healthy. Thus far, no one has said Lindstrom is not, and his velocity was at 98 mph on Tuesday. Still, he had no command of his offspeed pitches, and threw a number of four-seam fastballs, which are less stressful to his arm. 

It doesn’t take hitters long to realize that only fastballs are coming.

Lindstrom has appeared in 32 games this year, and he’s 2-1 with a 6.52 ERA. He is 14 of 16 in save chances. He didn’t get the missed save on Tuesday, that went to Sanches.

In Spring Training, Lindstrom dealt with a rotator cuff strain at the World Baseball Classic, and he missed almost all of the preseason games.

The Marlins bullpen already is dealing with some injury issues. Kiko Calero is on the disabled list with right shoulder inflammation. On Wednesday afternoon, he was throwing catch on flat ground with Anibal Sanchez, who is on the DL with a shoulder injury.

And Leo Nunez, a fallback closer option, has an injury concern. Nunez left Tuesday’s game after facing two batters in the eighth inning due to a sprained right ankle. He is day-to-day.

If Lindstrom is indeed feeling some discomfort, the Marlins bullpen be even more shorthanded.

A possible option in the Minor Leagues is right-hander Rick VandenHurk, who is in the rotation for Triple-A New Orleans.

— Joe Frisaro  

Nunez sprains right ankle

Marlins reliever Leo Nunez was removed in the eighth inning on Tuesday night with a right ankle sprain.

Florida’s primary setup right-hander, Nunez faced two Orioles’ batters, surrendering a home run to Matt Wieters and a single to Robert Andino. Immediately, trainer Sean Cunningham and manager Fredi Gonzalez came to the mound.

Nunez has appeared in 37 games, and he’s been the bridge reliever to closer Matt Lindstrom. Nunez was replaced by left-hander Dan Meyer.

— Joe Frisaro


Lindstrom fan of Lidstrom

The spelling isn’t exactly the same, but the last names are one letter away from being identical.

Marlins closer Matt Lindstrom is a fan of Detroit Red Wings standout defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom.

Lindstrom actually hears some heckling from baseball fans who make the hockey comparison. The Red Wings lost Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals to the Pittsburgh Penguins. When Lindstrom was warming up in the bullpen on Friday at Toronto’s Rogers Centre, some fans screamed at him: “The third period is starting, you’d better get down to Detroit!”

Lindstrom says that’s not the first time fans at a baseball game have made the hockey connection.

“I got some of that in Philadelphia, too,” he said. “They’d say, ‘Don’t you play hockey?”

Lindstrom said he would love to meet Lidstrom. And he’d like to have a Nicklas Lidstrom No. 5 Red Wings jersey. He’d be willing to exchange his No. 22 Marlins jersey.

“That would be sweet,” Lindstrom said.  

Lidstrom the hockey player is from Sweden. A few years back, Lindstrom went on a two-year Mormon mission to Sweden and visited his grandfather’s birthplace.

Fun name fact. The literal translation of Lindstrom’s last name is: “Tree by the stream.”

The Marlins reliever is a hockey fan, and his favorite team is Ottawa. When he pitched in the Minor Leagues at Binghamton, N.Y., in 2005, he would see some Senators games.

— Joe Frisaro