Assuming it’s irrelevant to the season (or the season itself is irrelevant, which seems more and more likely!), the Carlos Zambrano “non-pitching” forearm/elbow injury mystery is the greatest thing ever. Each possible theory is improbably more insane.
The original excuse, when he got checked on after a pitch and didn’t go out of the game, was dehydration. Which doesn’t make much sense, because it wasn’t that hot nor is it that hard to keep hydrated in a baseball game, but whatever, it could possibly happen.
After he got pulled from the Washington game, somehow that excuse wasn’t weird enough, so they came up with a new one after talking to Carlos: he was taking too much batting practice, particularly on the left side, and it was aggravating his arm. Carlos Zambrano is a right handed pitcher, but he’s also a switch hitter for no particular reason; he’s better than your average pitcher at hitting, but the switch hitting is a bit of eccentric behavior. (Over the last three years, he’s batted slightly better as a righty than a lefty, so I’m thinking switching sides isn’t really helping him.) The idea Carlos was taking so much batting practice he was hurting himself – for pitching or otherwise – is pretty ludicrous idea, but Carlos enjoys hitting enough you could possibly believe the concept – if you were medicated just enough.
Now, not satisfied with the randomness of that reason, the Cubs have come up with yet another explanation: Zambrano’s “tennis elbow” is because – he’s spending too much time on the Internet. He only could pitch 3 1/3 because he’s sending too many e-mails to Venezuela!
I guess that’s what happened to MY fastball.
Mrs. Dusty Baker bought all sorts of wrist guards and wireless mice and other things to help Carlos be more ergonomic, but what I’m thinking is he really needs some good Voice Recognition software to get his fingers away from the keyboard.
I can not wait until the next reason!
Add: From the Tribune version of this pressing story:
“People would think we’re just coming up with an excuse or an alibi for [high] pitch counts,” Baker said.
Nah, Dusty’s off; people would just think you’re coming up with hilariously lame excuses for the pitch counts.