Jameson Taillon continued his Tommy John rehab today, going three shutout innings in an extended Spring Training intrasquad game at Pirate City. The game was originally scheduled against Toronto, but was switched at the last minute due to rain. He gave up just two hits and a walk, while striking out four. His fastball was sitting 93-94 MPH, and touched 96.
Taillon struck out the side in the first inning, seen in the video below. The only hard hit off him came in the second inning, when Danny Arribas lined a double off the left field wall. I felt kind of bad for Alexis Bastardo right after that, since Taillon responded to the double with two nasty front door curveballs that fooled the right-handed hitter, followed by a 95 MPH fastball on the outside to get him swinging. The first curveball had Bastardo ducking away from the plate, before sharply turning and dropping into the strike zone at the last second.
I expected Taillon to go four innings this time, since he went three the last time. He only threw 32 pitches last time, and said that the goal today was to get an increase in pitches before he saw an increase in innings. He threw 41 pitches today, and should go four innings in his next start on Monday, which should still be in extended Spring Training.
I also asked him about the cut on his foot that put him out for a brief amount of time. He confirmed that this happened between his first and second rehab starts, leading to the longer delay between those outings. How he got the cut was a bit of a freak accident.
“The door at my apartment complex swung and caught my foot and sliced it up pretty good,” Taillon said, noting that he was still throwing, but was away from the mound for 3-4 days, and needed stitches. It was a minor injury, which basically resulted in the equivalent of a skipped start.
Here is the video of Taillon’s first inning today.
Clay Holmes Throws Two Innings
Clay Holmes continued his progression today, going two innings in the same game, pitching opposite of Taillon. Holmes didn’t allow a run or a hit, and only gave up one walk, while striking out one. He got through the first inning on just five pitches, getting three quick ground ball outs to the right side.
The only damage against Holmes was in the form of a walk on a long at-bat to start the second inning. He recovered by getting a double play on a soft lineout to second baseman Erik Forgione. Holmes followed that with his first strikeout. He was asked to remain out for one more batter, and made it quick, getting a first pitch groundout on a nice play by Forgione to range far to his left to field the play at second.
Holmes was sitting 92-95 MPH with his fastball, and threw 19 pitches. Here is the video from his second inning of work.
Schwind Has Splenectomy
Jonathan Schwind last played for the Altoona Curve on April 24th, leaving the game with what has been described as an “internal injury.” I talked to Schwind today at Pirate City, who said that he had his spleen removed after colliding with Eric Wood on a fly ball. The crazy thing about that injury is that this has happened twice in Altoona games this year. David Dahl recently left a game after a collision in the outfield, and had to get his spleen removed.
Schwind saw a doctor after the game, and they thought it was his spleen. He went to the hospital, and a CT scan and x-ray showed that the spleen was ruptured. He didn’t need to have it removed, but said that his spleen was “pretty smashed.” After the advice of the doctors, he had it removed. This also came after getting some pain that was due to blood loss. It was a good thing he had the spleen removed, as they found a liter of blood in his stomach while removing it. He spent a few days in the hospital, and was home for a few weeks before returning to Pirate City.
Schwind said that he tried reaching out to Dahl yesterday after his surgery.
The recovery time is unknown, since this is a unique injury. He lost 20 pounds after the injury, but has gained 10 back. He will be cleared to do some weight lifting next week.
Grullon Out For the Year
Adrian Grullon had Tommy John surgery last August, and is just now getting back to throwing from 120 feet. However, don’t expect to see him with one of the short-season league teams this year. He is out for the season, and told me today that he should make his return during the Fall Instructional Leagues. He might even pitch in the Dominican in the winter, before making a return next year.
Grullon is an interesting prospect. He was signed as a six foot tall right-hander, but quickly shot up to 6′ 8″. He can hit the mid-90s with his fastball, and has some nice break on his curveball. He pitched briefly in Bristol last year, striking out eight in 7.2 innings, and giving up just one run. However, he felt a pop in his elbow during one of his starts, and that eventually led to the surgery. His size and stuff should give him a shot to be a starter when he returns next year, although he might need an aggressive push to West Virginia, since he will be 23 years old.