Padres Closer Candidates Mending Early Injuries

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The Padres bullpen has a lot to sort out over the next few weeks, and two closer candidates are already on the mend from minor injuries as spring training starts down in Peoria, Arizona. Fernando Rodney tweaked his hamstring while pitching in a Winter League, and Kevin Quackenbush injured his the first day of pitcher workouts in Spring Training.

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Rodney had a disastrous 2015 season after a good 2014 and was released from the Mariners. Quackenbush similarly rose all the way to the majors in 2014 before a slight regression last season. Rodney given his experience is expected to be the teams first closer option while Quackenbush has to show that he can be a dominant major league reliever himself.

Manager Andy Green noted that he wanted to take things slow with his relievers and there was no need to rush them back out onto the field:

“It makes no sense to try to get them ready for a March 2 or 3 game. It does not take relief pitchers that amount of time to get ready for the season. In both of their cases we think it’s prudent to take our time and integrate them into games middle to later spring.”

Rodney and Quackenbush did throw a bullpen side session and that reportedly went well as they stretch things out to get back in pitching shape.

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“Their arms felt great. Hamstrings on both of them felt really good. We are probably going to wait a few days before integrating them into PFP [pitchers’ fielding practice] drills. Everything is positive on that end.”

Spring training games start next week, but there is still a long time until the start of the regular season and a lot of opportunity for the Padres to get looks at everybody in camp and see how it will all get sorted out.

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