Anibal Sanchez Injury: Updates on Tigers Pitcher's Triceps and Return

Daniel KramerFeatured Columnist

LAKELAND, FL - FEBRUARY 20:  Anibal Sanchez #19 of the Detroit Tigers fields during the rag ball drill during the Spring Training workout day at the TigerTown Facility on February 20, 2016 in Lakeland, Florida.  (Photo by Mark Cunningham/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
Mark Cunningham/Getty Images

Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Anibal Sanchez has been sidelined since the final weekend of February due to some swelling in the triceps of his throwing arm, according to Jon Morosi of Fox Sports.

Continue for updates.

Sanchez to Continue Throwing Program

Thursday, March 10

Sanchez told reporters he will throw live batting practice on Friday but is fighting bronchitis that is slowing him down. 

"It's really giving me a hard time," Sanchez said. "I can't breathe."

Manager Brad Ausmus said on March 5 that Sanchez threw a second bullpen session that morning consisting of 25 pitches, per Katie Strang of ESPN. Ausmus added the pitcher's arm "felt good" after the session. 

Sanchez Comments on Injury

Thursday, Feb. 25

Sanchez believes the swelling isn’t serious and should heal with time, per Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press:

I’m fine, I’m good. I think it’s early. We don’t have to rush anything, especially if I have the soreness. But in order for me to throw, I don’t have to take the risk of it getting worse if I want it to be ready in time.

There’s no rush right now. We have enough time to get ready for the season. We have a month and a half.

Ausmus Comments on Injury

Thursday, Feb. 25

Ausmus said Sanchez initially experienced soreness in his throwing arm on Feb. 22, per Fenech, which prompted the team to conduct an MRI. Sanchez felt his triceps flare up while throwing a fastball during a bullpen session, per Beck.

Ausmus noted he isn’t overly worried, per Fenech.

“It doesn’t seem to be anything concerning, but I guess you’re always cringing when it involved one of your starting pitchers,” the third-year manager said. “It’s not really in an area where we see a ton of problems with. The MRI looked good; it just showed a little inflammation there.”

Sanchez Unable to Shake Injury Bug

Sanchez, 32, has missed time in each of the last three seasons with arm injuries and has never reached the 200-inning plateau. In 2015, Sanchez went 10-10 with a 1.28 WHIP and career-worst 4.99 ERA. The team shut him down in August after he suffered a strained rotator cuff, yet he still allowed an American League-worst 29 home runs.

The Tigers are hoping the 10-year veteran will round out the top three of a rotation anchored by Justin Verlander and offseason signee Jordan Zimmermann.

Sanchez’s injury seems like a minor byproduct of returning to baseball activities after a lengthy hiatus over the winter. By returning Monday, he can quash most speculation about his health as Detroit continues camp and hopes to bounce back from its last-place finish in 2015.