Toby Hall dislocated his shoulder -- they're calling it a "subluxation." But let's be honest, if you have to "pop it back" in, it was was obviously disclocated, no matter what fancy name you put on it. -- diving for a ball while playing first base in the 9th inning of a blow out in Tucson. He'll have an MRI on Monday to determine the severity of the injury and give an estimate on how much time he'll miss.
Ozzie bristled at questions about why Hall was even playing first base, saying the only safe place is the press box. Ha ha, Ozzie. We get it. Sportswriters shouldn't be questioning your dumb decisions.
If there's any silver lining to the injury -- searching for a silver lining is about the only thing I can do right now -- it's that we won't see Hall at first base during the regular season. It's not like the Sox catchers were going to throw out many baserunners this season as it was. Who needs a throwing shoulder anyways? Not Mark Prior. Not Freddy Garcia.
I don't believe for a second that Hall was just out there because Eduardo Perez's calf tightened up again. Hall's been out at first base four or five times already this spring. And back when he was acquired -- or maybe it was at Soxfest -- Ozzie said he liked Hall because he could take the pressure off of guys like AJ and Thome. I think Ozzie had every intention of inserting Hall into the lineup at first base and shifting Konerko to DH against some tough lefties.
While Hall is a great caddie for Pierzynski, he hardly provides the pop you'd expect from a platoon 1B/DH. He'd only be an upgrade from Thome in that he wouldn't strike out as much, which isn't much of an upgrade when you're giving up as much OBP and power as Hall would have.
It's a woman's prerogative to change her mind. Phil Rogers reserves that right as well. One shortened Freddy Garcia outing and one John Danks pickoff was all that it took for Rogers to reverse his two-articles-a-week stand against the Sox off-season moves.
During John Danks 5th-starter-clinching performance last week, he picked Matt Holliday off of first base. Holliday wasn't looking at Danks at the time. He appeared to be having a conversation with his first base coach, or maybe even Paul Konerko.
I'm sure Danks has put a lot of work into his pick-off move. Good for him. He needed it. That fact shouldn't be changing anyone's opinion of the McCarthy trade though. Especially not when the only runner he's erased with it was preoccupied scoping out ladies above the first base dugout.
Danks showed two different moves in his outing against the Rockies. One was long, lazy, and all but telegraphed to the runner. The other, the one that caught Holliday making dinner plans, was quicker, but far from great. I'd call it average at best.
I expect Rogers to be ripping the trades as soon as McCarthy or Garcia crack the 3-win plateau or if Danks struggles initially, for which we should all prepare ourselves. Danks has needed about a 10 game adjustment period to each new level the past couple of years. I'm only hoping for non-disastrous outings until mid-May.
Charlie Haeger and Adam Russell were both reassigned to the minors Sunday. That leaves most of the roster questions decided.
I fully expect Anderson to be Charlotte's starting center fielder, and Boone Logan to be the Knights closer. Floyd figures to be the Sox long-man and probably initially John Dank's caddy.
Even though Logan has yet to yield a run in an "A" game this spring, I still think he'll be on the outside looking in. He's struggled in the two outings on the back fields that don't count against his spring stats, and I know the Sox weigh those performances just as heavily as they do the good ones against mostly major leaguers on the big fields.
Logan's best chance at making the club may lie in Floyd's status as the de facto 6th starter. The Sox probably want their sixth starter "stretched out" so that he's available at a moments notice should something arise. As we saw last year with McCarthy, Charlie Haeger's versatility may allow for Floyd to make the big league roster as the long-term 6th starter with Haeger in the break glass, use only in case of emergency role.