“Black Jack” Flaherty Showing Signs Of Improvement | He’s Shaking The Injury Bug

“Black Jack” Flaherty Showing Signs Of Improvement | He’s Shaking The Injury Bug

The St. Louis Cardinals have been without their starting pitcher Jack Flaherty all season.  After having a successful 2021 season where he finished with a 9-2 record and 3.22 ERA, Flaherty was ready to play a significant role in leading the Cardinals to another postseason appearance.

Jack Flaherty Is Back & He’s Money Whenever He Toes The Slab

Let’s not forget that he dealt with an oblique tear that forced him to miss some time last season and if that injury did not happen, he could have put himself in the NL Cy Young race.

Well, things didn’t go as planned for the 26-year-old going into the 2022 season. 

Flaherty started the season on the injured list dealing with inflammation in his right shoulder and while there’s no confirmed timetable on a return, Cardinals manager Oliver Marmol believes he’ll be back soon.

In an mlb.com article, Marmol said that Flaherty is gearing towards a late May/early June return which is a positive sign.

 The right hander recently had a bullpen session and he felt pretty good.

“Everything feels really good, and it’s been fun watching how the ball is coming out of my hand and how it feels coming out,” Flaherty said in an mlb.com article after his recent bullpen session this past week.

When Flaherty returns to the lineup, the Cardinals will have another weapon on their pitching staff, which comes as no surprise. He’s been the Opening Day starter the past few seasons and has been a spark for the team on the mound.

MLBbro Pitcher Jack Flaherty Suffers First Loss Of The Season |He Is Human After All

 

According to the article, Flaherty spent the last two seasons with a small tear and bursitis in his right shoulder.

The fact that our MLBbro was still going out there and competing at a high level speaks volumes to the competitor he is. But safety and health is very important and the Cardinals certainly don’t want anything serious to happen to their talented pitcher.

In March, Flaherty was put on a rehab plan and also went through a strengthening program to help out with the inflammation. One word that Flaherty has really dealt with over the last few years is patience. 

“Last year, the oblique injury felt longer because there wasn’t necessarily a timetable, and I really couldn’t do anything to speed it up,” said Flaherty. “It wasn’t like I could do more rehab; I had to just give it more time to heal, which felt like forever. It wasn’t like I could put this on it or do this exercise because we had to let it heal first. And it was the first time I had injured [an oblique], so that just made it a lot different than this year.”

There’s no question that Flaherty is ready to get back on that bump and put his team in positions to win games.

You Don’t Know Jack!

“That’s why we love to play the game. To be on that mound, that’s what I love to do,” he said. “I like being in here supporting these guys and pulling for them, but I really want to be back out there. Everything is feeling good, and I’m confident.”

All eyes will be on Flaherty once he makes his season debut and he certainly will go out there and compete every pitch.

Bro On Bro Crime | JP Crawford Continues To Own Fellow MLBbro Taylor Hearn At The Plate

Bro On Bro Crime | JP Crawford Continues To Own Fellow MLBbro Taylor Hearn At The Plate

LOS ANGELES – While several aspects of baseball are always changing, whether that is players changing teams or a rule change, some storylines just stay the same.

This is the case whenever Taylor Hearn of the Texas Rangers and J.P. Crawford of the Seattle Mariners ended up battling it out.  On Thursday, it was no different. Crawford went 1-for-2 against Hearn, hitting a three-run home run in the process. In his career against Hearn, Crawford is 8-for-14, with a pair of home runs, along with six RBI. 

Along with that home run to Crawford, Hearn had a night in which he will try and forget. He only pitched three innings, giving up four hits, four walks, and five runs to go with only four strikeouts. Even with Hearn’s subpar outing, the Rangers came back and won, 8-6. Crawford has been off to a hot start this season, as he has a batting average of .310, an OPS of .934, and a SLG percentage of .500. Crawford has 5 RBI so far. His home run against Hearn was his first of the season. 

On the other hand, Hearn has had a very shaky start to his season. He’s pitched a total of three games this season, never making it farther than the fourth inning. Hearn has no wins and one loss this year, with a 7.59 ERA, and with 18 hits and six walks to only 14 strikeouts. But we know the potential to have commanding stuff is there. 

 

Both Crawford and Hearn had to battle in order to get to where they are today. 

Crawford was drafted out of Lakewood High School in Southern California, getting drafted 16th overall by the Philadelphia Phillies back in 2013. He was a high prospect in their organization, but due to an injury-plagued campaign, he was never really able to get the ball rolling in Philly. In late 2018, when Crawford was dealt to the Mariners, he finally got his feet planted, and has never looked back. During his time with the Mariners, Crawford is batting .258, with 19 home runs, and 129 RBI.

 

 

Hearn was originally drafted three times, in the 22nd, 25th, and 36th rounds, respectively. He chose to play college baseball at San Jacinto College and Oklahoma Baptist University instead, and it paid off. He was drafted by and signed with the Washington Nationals in the fifth round of the 2015 draft. Hearn was traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2016. In 2018, Hearn was traded to the Rangers. He made his MLB debut in 2019. He was a reliever at first, eventually transitioning into a starter. Over his career, Hearn has six wins and eight losses, with a career 5.02 ERA. 

The Rangers and Mariners don’t play again until early June, so it’s unlikely to see the pair again this season. If they do end up squaring off again this year, will history repeat itself, or will there be a change in fortune?

Rookie Sensation Hunter Greene (1-1, 4.35, 13 K) will be making his third start of the season against the St. Louis Cardinals on Friday after throwing a record 39 pitches of 100 MPH + in his last outing.
Josiah Gray Is Stepping Up As Young Ace Of Washington Nationals Staff

Josiah Gray Is Stepping Up As Young Ace Of Washington Nationals Staff

There’s new Melanated Mound Marauder on the come up and his name is Josiah Gray.

With veteran leaders Stephen Strasburg and Joe Ross still on the mend, Gray has become the stopper on the staff.

The Washington Nationals pitcher was a top prospect in the LA Dodgers organization and came to Washington in the blockbuster trade that sent Mad Max Scherzer and talented shortstop Trea Turner to the talent-laden Dodgers in 2021.   

Nats fans saw the move as a clearinghouse. A shameless unloading of talent that occurs too often when small market clubs rise to baseball supremacy.  Just two years removed from the first World Series title in franchise history, the Nats typically started cleaning shop, cutting star players and potentially high salary and preparing for another rebuild. However, the X-Factor in that trade was Gray. If he was ready to develop into an ace starter, then the Nationals would be patting themselves on the back for years to come. 

Washington was picked by most analysts to finish at the bottom of the NL East with the Mets, Braves and Phillies all slugging it out for supremacy once again. 12 games into the season and the Nats are where everyone expected (5-7), but the shining light and hope for the future is the young Gray who completed his second straight quality start, going 5.1 innings and surrendering just one run and three hits while striking out eight in a 6-1 Washington Nationals win over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Tuesday. 

The first step towards becoming a competitive club is beating the teams that your roster says you should beat. The Nationals did that on Tuesday, overpowering a Diamondbacks club that is expected to finish among baseball’s worst. 

Gray is finding his zone and a comfortable home in the Nation’s capital. The Dodgers will surely wish they had held onto the 24-year-old rising star if he keeps elevating his stature at this pace. Young arms with command and confidence are hard to come by and Gray has both.  

 

“When you see guys time and time again and you continue to get them out, it gives you that extra confidence my stuff is still playing,” Gray said. “They’re still having a difficult time in picking up my stuff. It definitely gives you confidence.”

The Nats have a long way to go and some more talent to acquire in order to compete with the top of the division, but the silver lining is the development of Gray, who after a rough first start against the Mets in which he surrendered four runs in four innings, settled down in his next start tossing 5 scoreless frames against the World Champion Braves. 

Gray has a 2-1 record and a 3.14 ERA on the season. In his last 10.1 innings the New Rochelle, NY native has allowed just one earned run and he’s overpowered hitters, striking out 13. His out pitch has been his curveball, which is keeping hitters off balance nicely. 

His dominance on the mound, in the absence of a veteran ace such as Max Scherzer, is a huge confidence builder for manager Dave Martinez and his fellow MLBro teammate Josh Bell, who plays first base.

 

“It’s really exciting to see him grow and I’m pumped to see what happens next for him,” said first Bell, who’s off to a scorching start of his own and seeking a huge bag on the free agent market after the season. 

This future Black Ace is one of the rising pitching stars in MLB along with Cincinatti Reds fireballer Hunter Greene and Cleveland Guardians wonderkid Triston McKenzie.