Injuries are often out of a team's control, but Cincinnati needs to do everything in its power to get healthy in the coming weeks.
Spring training could not have gotten off to a worse start for the Reds.
A few days before pitchers and catchers were required to report to camp, Mat Latos slipped while tossing and tore meniscus cartilage, via MLB.com's Mark Sheldon. On Friday, Latos underwent minor knee surgery and is expected to resume throwing in 10 days.
Sure, he may be ready to get back to throwing soon. However, will he be ready for Opening Day?
"We'll just see how he progresses," Walt Jocketty said, via Sheldon. "Right now, I can't say whether it would or not. We don't think so, but we'll see."
Latos was walking around without crutches or pain the day after the surgery, via Sheldon. The 26-year-old weighed in on when he would be ready:
There's really no rush to get back. We're not going to win a championship in April. That being said, I would love to be out there Opening Day and pitching against the Cardinals. I guess a good sign is you see me up and walking around.
We're just going to play it by ear. Kremchek says seven to 10 days when I'm actually able to start throwing on it. He's the doctor, not me. I just throw a baseball for a living.
The right-hander was also rehabbing his right arm after having bone chips removed shortly after the season. Now he has to find a way to rehab both injuries in six weeks.
Cincinnati does not need a fifth starter until April 9 in St. Louis. That gives Latos a few more days to get ready to go before he is really needed. If he's not ready by then, the Reds will need to figure out what to do. His health is more important than rushing him back, but he is a key member of the rotation.
Latos' injury will get all of the attention, but the Reds have a few injuries from last season that they need to put behind them.
Sheldon also provided updates to Cincinnati's two setup men—right-hander Jonathan Broxton and left-hander Sean Marshall.
Broxton needed surgery to repair a torn muscle in his right forearm in August. He is doing a throwing program and could be pitching off a mound by the end of the month. His status for Opening Day is up in the air.
Marshall had shoulder tendinitis that limited him to only 16 appearances last season. He is at "full go" after cutting back on the workload this winter. There could be an unexpected setback, but it sounds like he will be ready to go come March 31.
The Cincinnati Enquirer's C. Trent Rosecrans reported that right-hander Johnny Cueto does not have any lingering effects from his lat injury that began in 2012.
Cincinnati's pitching staff is working hard to get healthy by Opening Day. The schedule isn't very forgiving early on, as 19 of the team's first 25 games are against teams that made the 2013 MLB playoffs. Although the Reds can't afford to go too long without some of their top pitchers, rushing guys back could be harmful down the road.