McCann returns to camp
Here are a couple of tidbits to devour before the Braves and Cardinals play this afternoon:
Brian McCann was anything but his usual self when he arrived at Champion Stadium this morning. He was obviously relieved that he had the opportunity to interact with Luis Salazar at the Orlando Regional Medical Center last night.
But at the same time McCann was still shaken up about hitting the foul ball that provided a near fatal blow to Salazar Wednesday afternoon. Click here to read more about McCann’s thoughts about this situation.
There were no updates on Salazar’s condition Thursday. It appears he incurred significant damage to his left eye. The significance will be revealed within the next couple of days.
MLB.com’s Greg Johns reported Mariners outfielder Franklin Gutierrez has left camp and flown to Florida with his wife Vivian, who is Salazar’s daughter.
As Braves general manager Frank Wren said, it was tough to focus on yesterday’s game after Salazar got hit. But this morning, a handful of scouts were raving about what they saw from Arodys Vizcaino.
The Disney scoreboard clocked one of Vizcaino’s fastball at 101 mph and a couple of scouts agreed with that reading.
When one of these scouts was told an American League scout had the young right-hander topped out at 97 mph, he responded by saying, “he did throw a couple of fastballs that were 97 mph.”
Over the past two weeks, I’ve heard at least two people say they believe Vizcaino will end up being a closer. With his live fastball and the potential he has with his curveball, he could seemingly be very intimidating in this role.
Earlier this week when I mentioned Vizcaino needed to find a little more consistency with his breaking ball, a fan told me I needed to check my reports or at least update them.
When I asked one evaluator, he described Vizcaino’s curveball as filthy. Two others have shared my belief that his arm action is slower with his curveball than it is with his fastball.
Regardless of which of these assessments you share, this kid has plenty of time to become even more impressive than he has been during his first Major League camp. He won’t even turn 21 until November.
With this being said, don’t be surprised if Vizcaino and Brett Oberholtzer are among the players cut from big league camp this afternoon. This is the time of year, where clubs need to make sure they have enough available innings for their Major Leaguers and high-level Minor Leaguers.