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Injury Updates: Santana, Wheeler, Vazquez, Middlebrooks

It's less than a week into spring training and the injuries are already mounting. Surprised? You shouldn't be. This is baseball, injuries happen.

David Banks

Baseball is in full swing, folks. At least spring baseball is. And with these spring games come injuries. So far we've seen a significant injury to a major star and a bunch of minor injuries. Every team is affected in one way or another, and every day there are more updates. So, we'll give you a quick rundown of some key injuries over the last week.

  • Johan Santana has had more than his fair share of injuries throughout his time with the New York Mets. He was shut down last season, and the team is being as cautious as possible with him this year. Santana threw off a mound last week for the first time and is on schedule to make the team's Opening Day start.
  • The St. Louis Cardinals have expressed some clear concerns regarding Rafael Furcal's elbow. So much so that the team has already signed some insurance at shortstop and Furcal will only hit right-handed this season. Furcal, a long-time switch-hitter, will hit righty only to help protect his elbow.
  • The Mets will be without Pedro Feliciano indefinitely. The veteran reliever had an irregular heartbeat that initially sidelined him. Additional tests revealed a small hole in Felciano's heart. He will be able to play again and the condition is not life-threatening.
  • Christian Garcia felt pain in his forearm. That was enough to shut the Washington Nationals' reliever down. He is undergoing tests and resting his pitching arm, but he hopes to be able to pitch again soon.
  • The Yankees are being cautious with their new third baseman. Kevin Youkilis experienced some cramping in his side, so the team scratched Youk in order for him to rest. The Yankees did not want the cramping or tightness to develop into an oblique strain.
  • Plenty of teams were scouting Javier Vazquez. He's a veteran starter who posted solid numbers in his last season in the bigs - 2011. However, Vasquez's comeback trail has been cut short by a knee injury. He won't pitch in 2013.
  • The Mets had a scare today when their young pitcher Zack Wheeler had to be scratched from his first spring start. Wheeler pitched two innings in relief last weekend, but he couldn't go today because of what the club fears is an oblique strain.
  • Another prominent young player suffered a scare today. The Chicago Cubs' Starlin Castro felt tightness in his hamstring. There was immediate concern about Castro's ability to be ready for Opening Day, but the hammy issue may just be tightness and cramping.
  • As reported this evening, Will Middlebrook suffered an injury to his right wrist. It's the same wrist that he broke last year. There is legitimate concern around the Red Sox that Middlebrooks could miss significant time from this injury.

Here are a few updates that were less prominent: