PHOENIX (AP) – Francisco Rodriguez’s spring training debut for the Milwaukee Brewers could be delayed after the pitcher injured a foot by stepping on a cactus.
“He took out a lot of the thorns, but there some more in there,” Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said Wednesday. “I don’t think it’s that big of a setback, but I imagine he’s pretty sore today.”
Rodriguez reported late because of a visa problem and was expected to make his first appearance Thursday against San Diego in Peoria.
“He may come in today and say, ‘I’m pitching.’” Roenicke said. “The way he is. It’s tough to keep him back, so he may end up pitching tomorrow. I just have to talk to him and see how he’s doing.”
The 32-year-old, who agreed to a $3.25 million, one-year contract last month, was acquired during the 2011 All-Star break and went 4-0 with a 1.86 ERA in 31 appearances. He was 2-7 with a 4.38 ERA the following season, then had a 2.70 ERA with 54 strikeouts in 46 2-3 innings last year. Rodriguez got his 300th save on June 22, then was traded to Baltimore a month later.
Milwaukee has history with unusual injuries. Pitcher Zack Greinke began the 2011 season on the disabled list after getting hurt during a pickup basketball game, and general manager Doug Melvin was bit by a scorpion last year. In 1994, pitcher Steve Sparks separated a shoulder trying to tear a phone book in half.
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