Right now, the Padres have ELEVEN players on the disabled list: Hector Sanchez, Alex Dickerson, Travis Jankowski, Manuel Margot, Trevor Cahill, Jarred Cosart, Robbie Erlin, Christian Friedrich, Colin Rea, Jered Weaver, and Buddy Baumann. The good news is that there have been some recent developments to suggest that some of these guys may be coming back soon.
Jered Weaver is scheduled for a rehab appearance with El Paso, at Albuquerque, on Thursday.— Dennis Lin (@sdutdennislin) June 17, 2017
The setting may be a little unsettling, as the elevation at Albuquerque’s Isotopes Park is roughly a mile above sea level, in desert air, which means that it’s just about the most homer-prone venue in the nation. For a pitcher who has been particularly prone to the long ball, it might be a rough outing. Still, with rookies Dinelson Lamet and Miguel Diaz holding down rotation slots, the team would love to have Weaver back in the fold - assuming that he’s capable of keeping the ball in the park. He’s been on the shelf since May 20th with hip inflammation, which was reported to have been an issue that’s plagued him for a few seasons now.
Trevor Cahill has been throwing bullpen sessions since the weekend, which suggests that he’s nearing a rehab assignment. After his hot start, the veteran playing on a one-year contract was starting to garner trade candidate murmurs, but a strained shoulder has kept him on the DL since May 14th.
Jarred Cosart has been on the disabled list since June 5th with a strained elbow. he received a PRP (platelet-rich plasma) injection and has joined the kids in extended spring training to begin what sounds like should be a lengthy rehab process.
Christian Friedrich has been a forgotten man this year after leading the team in starts last season. He’s been on the DL since the start of the season with a strained lat muscle, and has been slowed by elbow tenderness. He’s in San Antonio working his strength back up. His stat line isn’t much to look at, but it’s too early in the process to look at his numbers anyway.
Carter Capps was taken off the DL and was optioned to El Paso. During his time in extended spring training, they worked with his delivery to try to improve consistency and mitigate future injury. Before the season, he was a subject of much discussion both regarding the legality of his delivery and his timeline for his takeover of the closer role. At this point, a successful return to MLB action seems like a reasonable target this season.
Reliever Buddy Baumann seems to have spent more time hurt than not since signing with the organization before the 2016 season. He’s been on the DL all season with a strained lower back. He’s been reported to have done throwing exercises and some long-toss, but no indications that he’ll be back on the mound.
Colin Rea and Robbie Erlin are recovering from Tommy John surgery and both are unlikely to see the field this season.
Centerfielder Manuel Margot has been on the DL since May 25th with a strained calf. He was initially placed in a walking boot but has been doing on-field exercises with the team for the past week. He ran the bases at full speed on Saturday, indicating that he’s near a rehab assignment. With the hot hitting from Franchy Cordero and Jose Pirela, along with the addition of Matt Szczur, the team has the luxury of patience with their speedy centerpiece, so he might get an extended assignment to get back into game shape. He also might get an extended assignment to gain an extra year of team control, but that’s a horse of a different color.
Travis Jankowski’s fractured foot has had him sidelined since April 23rd. He has been cleared to resume baseball activities, but they’re likely to take the slow path back to ensure that the speedster’s foot doesn’t risk re-injury. His early struggles combined with the reasons noted above afford the team some patience to let him rehab and find his groove again in extended rehab before bringing him back up.
Leftfielder Alex Dickerson missed most of spring and all of the season so far with “back discomfort”, which sounds like it’s been a bulging disc complicated by a myriad of semi-related soft tissue injuries. Now there’s the chance of surgery and the only thing that seems certain is that he’s not going to be back any time soon. Any contribution from him this year would be a success at this point.
Hector Sanchez has been with El Paso on a rehab assignment and should be forcing a roster decision soon. While Luis Torrens has been making progress both at the plate and behind it, you’ve got to think that they would like to give Austin Hedges a day off from time to time. Similarly, Wil Myers has been in a prolonged slump at first base, and Sanchez is capable there as well. Then again, the team could decide to stick with the MLB options, which would mean designating Sanchez for assignment.