For all intents and purposes, it appears the New York Yankees are being extra cautious by shutting down Carlos Rodón for 7-10 days and placing him on the IL to start the season with his current forearm strain.
This is March. It's not October. Caution is the name of the game, especially for a team that has lost so many pitchers to long-term injuries in recent years. This is the right course of action.
So ... why did the caution only begin after Rodón had already made his first spring start if the pain began beforehand?
According to Cashman, Rodón's first hint that something was wrong came in the leadup to his first Yankees start on Sunday. He had maintenance and treatment ahead of the outing. Then he ... made the start anyway, which went poorly, and found himself struggling to recover in its aftermath. It's good the Yankees are preaching caution after the fact, but why did they delay themselves in getting there?
Carlos Rodón injury timeline: Yankees ace was already hurt before spring debut
Coming in the wake of learning Frankie Montas considered himself to be "eh" and pitched through shoulder troubles all last August, this isn't exactly a comforting reality.
To Rodón's credit, his comments after the injury were announced only reinforced what Yankee fans loved about the acquisition and why it feels like such a gut smack that he won't be there to pitch in the opening series against his old team, the San Francisco Giants.
Rodón put the whole issue in perspective well, claiming that he could pitch through his current ailment, but doesn't want to compromise himself in either the short- or long-term. He wants to be pitching in October and dominating, which he was brought here to do. He doesn't want to be struggling in May and petering out, leaving everyone wondering why he battled in secret in the first place and harming his own reputation in the process.
Still, the delivery of this news stung just as much on Thursday as it would've on Saturday, and the Yankees haven't exactly earned the benefit of the doubt here with the way they've managed pitchers' arms.
Remember just a few days ago when the team had a patented excuse for Rodón's early struggles and tried to pretend it was all part of the plan? And it now definitely seems like it wasn't?
Rodón seems like someone who understands the grand plan. The Yankees love to take their foot off the gas pedal in August in the name of October success. So why did they skirt this particular issue for several days, just to make the eventual reveal weirder? It certainly seems like the team is lucky this whole thing didn't worsen on them.