Hanley’s Back – Did WBC Kill Dodgers’ Season? And Ted Lilly is Hurt, Again

A few years back, the POWERS THAT BE decided what a wonderful idea it would be for major league stars to play in a spring exhibition series known as the World Baseball Classic. What could go wrong? Well, for starters, players who play are players who get hurt, and this spring there were some significant injuries suffered by key major league performers while cavorting about in the WBC. Among those injured, throwing their teams’ seasons into early turmoil, were the yankees’ Mark Teixeira, who is not yet close to returning to the field, and the Dodgers’ Hanley Ramirez.

Majestic Hanley Ramirez L.A. Dodgers Replica Player Jersey

Ramirez suffered a serious injury, torn ligaments in his thumb, that required surgery, and he made his 2013 debut just last night, and what a night it was for Hanley. But I digress. As far as the WBC is concerned, injuries are a cost of doing business, regardless of the ramifications, and the organization was willing to accept that cost in order to keep its major league roster of ticket-sellers. The WBC agreed to pay the salaries of injured major leaguers out 30 days or more, for as long as they are unable to play. Estimates are that the Dodgers and yankees may be relieved of upwards of $10 M for the time that their two stars are

out of action. I wonder if they sold enough tickets to cover that?

Anyway, the name Hanley Ramirez was in the Dodgers’ lineup for the first time this season last night, and the overmatched Justin Sellers was on the bench. The result was the Dodgers’ easily beating first place Colorado, 6-2, behind the pitching of Hyun-Jin Ryu, who allowed only three hits and struck out 12 in six innings, and the hitting of Mr. Hanley, who homered and doubled in four at bats. Justin Sellers (1 HR, 2 RBI, .203 avg. over 64 ABs) remained on the bench.

The day before, Colorado destroyed LA 12-2 (Sellers was 0-3 at short), with Ted Lilly giving up eight hits and five runs in only three innings. This was Lilly’s second appearance in about a year. Since he signed his $33 M contract after the 2010 season, he has basically lived on the DL, but there were hopes that he was now healthy and could step in for Chad Billingsley, out for the next year following Tommy John surgery.

Reports today are that following Monday’s game, Lilly had not one, but two areas of his anatomy MRI-ed, neck and rib cage, that he received at least one injection, and that his status would be “re-evaluated”. I wonder if Hanley can pitch?

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