The 9 Dumbest Spring Training Injuries of the Year
Photo Credit: NY Daily News
Baseball may not be the most physical of sports, but the men who play this grand pastime never fail to find new and interesting ways to injure themselves—especially away from the field.
Judging by the following breakdown of bizarre maladies, baseball players should refrain from getting sandwiches, tattoos or playing with their dogs.
Such otherwise innocuous things have proved hazardous to their health.
Join me as we recount some injuries that will make your upset stomach after a weekend of drinking seem like a major ACL tear by comparison.
As you will see, we have peppered in a couple of non-players and some injuries that took place prior to spring training because, well, the bizarre nature of their injuries mandated we do so.
Of course, we may have missed a hilarious and unfortunate malady or two that could only be classified as a baseball injury. So please feel free to correct the blunder in the comments section below.
With that: We break down some guys who proved life away from the ball field can be just as treacherous as time spent on it.
9. Gio Gonzalez Struck Down with Adorable Injury
Photo Credit: Deadspin
Gio Gonzalez is a remarkable pitcher who loves his little dog more than you have ever loved anything in life.
His snuggle sessions are so intense that the dog once gave him a rug burn on his forehead. Deadspin caught wind of this story and properly put it into the pile of hilarious baseball injuries.
She gave me a rug burn. I hate her. And then I love her. And then I look in her face and then I love her again.
I am all for cuddling until your extremities burn, but there is a limit. That limit, if you are interested, ends at rug burns from the dog.
8. Doug Melvin Struck with Sudden Onset Scorpion Bite
Photo Credit: Cory Melvin Facebook (via Busted Coverage)
There are a lot of reasons to stay home during spring training. There are split squads, games that seem to go on forever and players who you have never heard of playing.
Also, half the teams play in Arizona where scorpions are apparently known to chill out. One such scorpion was spotted by Brewers GM Doug Melvin while relaxing in his Phoenix condo.
When he noticed what he thought was a harmless little bug, he went to grab it with a Kleenex, as reported by CBS Sports.
He breaks it down for us.
It stung me right through the Kleenex. My arm started swelling and then the numbness started going up my arm, like when you hit your funny bone. I was wondering if it might go all the way up my arm and go to my heart. I got nervous when it got up to my shoulder, so I went to the emergency room.
Sounds like a calm and measured response considering I would have went into a minor conniption fit, resulting in a concussion after knocking myself out after running into a wall.
Well, Melvin is doing just fine after what I would consider a moment of hell on earth.
And now we have the picture of the little bugger thanks to Cory Melvin's Facebook photo, acquired and posted by Busted Coverage.
7. Elvis Andrus Sidelined by Tattoo
Photo Credit: Elvis Andrus Twitter
Yes, Elvis Andrus didn't miss any extended period of time because of a tattoo, but one game is enough to feel vindicated in shaking our collective heads in shame.
As The Dallas Morning News' Gerry Fraley reported earlier in spring, the Rangers' Elvis Andrus was out of the lineup for a game because an "elaborate tattoo caused "sensitivity'' in left biceps."
That's right. Andrus sat down one day to get some ink and couldn't go the next because of it.
It should be noted that Andrus' art was in honor of the 24-year-old's late father. That's truly a great sentiment that could have possibly been done in the offseason.
Either way, I am not entirely certain any of you could get out of work for a tattoo. If it does work out, by all means let us know.
6. Brian Cashman Skydives, Breaks Leg on Dismount
Photo Credit: NY Daily News
If we are going to take anything away from Brian Cashman's injury, it's that one safe jump from an airplane should suffice on the day.
The Yankees' general manager was skydiving on Monday in an effort to raise awareness for the Wounded Warriors project.
The NY Daily News reports Cashman had already done his good deed and recorded a safe jump, but then went up for round two.
His return trip was not so successful.
Upon landing he said he heard a pop and later found out he broke his right fibula and dislocated his right ankle.
If someone asks you to jump out of a perfectly good airplane a second time, the answer should be, "nah, I'm good."
5. Anthony Swarzak Is Horrible at Horseplay
Hannah Foslien/Getty Images
It's all fun and games until some breaks some ribs.
Twins GM Terry Ryan explains:
When he was up here for TwinsFest, he was messing around with a couple guys and cracked a couple ribs, so he'll be out a month," Ryan said. "He was wrestling around. It was some horseplay. He was out with a couple friends and the team and cracked a couple ribs fooling around. It wasn't a fight or anything. It was just bad judgment wrestling around.
I really feel like Ryan was missing some expletives in there somewhere.
4. Prospect Shoots Himself in Leg
Photo Credit: Deadspin
If you are trying to make a Major League ballclub, it's best to keep the shooting of one's self to an absolute minimum.
Abraham drops a startling report with, "Red Sox OF prospect Bryce Brentz shot himself in the leg while cleaning a handgun a few weeks ago. Not on ST roster as a result."
Thankfully, we can rest easy that the young man is doing just fine, because he continues, "Brentz could play in games by the end of spring. Should be OK for season. Cherington clearly displeased. Said player was spoken to."
I imagine the meeting was fairly quick, with Cherington merely shouting, "don't shoot yourself."
3. Michael Taylor Injures Hand in Freak Gum-Throwing Incident
Christian Petersen/Getty Images
While it's true some baseball players can't walk and chew gum at the same time, one can't even manage to throw out his gum without injuring himself.
According to SF Gate, A's outfielder injured his hand while tossing out his gum. Forget all you knew about common sense and read this:
Taylor sliced his finger last week – while throwing out his gum. He’s 6-foot-5, and his hand hit the light on the ceiling of the dugout as he made the toss. So he’s missed a week, he told me, and he cannot play until the cut has totally closed, which it has not.
Somehow the report continues as if there are other pressing issues at hand like Taylor's ability to make the ball club this spring.
Really, once you deliver news that this 27-year old mangled his hand by trying to discard his gum, you are done reporting for the day.
The most important part of the tale has been told.
2. Joel Peralta Injures Neck Getting Sandwiches
Patrick McDermott/Getty Images
Rays fans, you may want to get a collection together to make sure Joel Peralta never has to get his own sandwiches again.
Pitcher Joel Peralta spoke to MLB.com recently to express his condolences over no longer pitching for the Dominican Republic in the World Baseball Classic.
I am glad you asked. According to Marc Topkin of The Tampa Bay Times, Peralta "hurt his neck getting out of car when he stopped for sandwiches."
If you are wondering, Topkin did some more reporting and let us all know that, "Peralta was still able to get the sandwiches … and said they were good. Shouldn’t miss much time."
We can excuse this injury simply based on the fact that said sandwiches were delicious, resulting in what I would consider an overall victory.
I once threw my back out sneezing, but anytime someone asked I just told them I threw it out and quickly changed the subject. Learning the fine art of the subject pivot would have served Peralta well here.
1. Francisco Liriano's Scary Injury
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If you try to scare your children, try not to bump into any walls, because you might cost yourself millions.
One broken right humerus later and he had to settle for $1 million with possible incentives. The drop in value is remarkable enough, but you really have to hear how he injured his arm.
Francisco Liriano said he broke his right humerus slamming it into a door on Christmas day to scare his children in the adjacent room.
...Liriano said he had to call his agent, Greg Genske, to tell him he couldn't travel to the United States to take his physical.
"At first he thought I was joking," Liriano said. "It was sad and disappointing a little bit. Things happen. I wish I could take it back."
If you really need to scare the kids, get someone else to do it. Either that or show them Tim Lincecum's ERA.
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