TigsTown MLN: Updating Injuries

As injuries continue to mount from Detroit all the way through the minor leagues, TigsTown is your place for the latest news and notes on player status, and timetables for return. Check inside to find out when fast-rising prospect Luis Marte will get back on the field, how Luke Pukonen is doing, and many more injury tidbits.

Kicking off our injury news, right-hander Luis Marte will make a rehab appearance with the Gulf Coast League Tigers today against the Yankees. Marte was shut down with soreness and stiffness in his right elbow after only two starts with Erie. He was dominating the Florida State prior to his promotion to Double-A, and his stock was soaring among prospect followers. Keep a close eye on Marte to see if his elbow issues resurface as the summer moves along.

At Double-A, Eddie Bonine left Monday's start with Erie after being struck by a line drive on the shin. Early reports indicate it is just a bruise, and not something that should hamper him long term. The Tigers will certainly be cautious in evaluating him when considering his potential return to Detroit after the All-Star break.

Shortstop Danny Worth hit Erie's DL last week after missing plenty of games with soreness in his back and shoulder. Neither injury is considered a long term concern, but Erie had to make room to allow for some roster flexibility in his absence. The club is hopeful that a stint not much longer than the minimum, will help him get back on the field and hitting again. Also at Erie, the Erie Times-News is reporting that Casey Fien will be held out of the Eastern League All-Star Game tonight due to stiffness in his right shoulder and back. He has been battling this since his last appearance on Friday, but indications are that he should be ready to go after the break.

At Lakeland, Cale Iorg headed to the disabled list with a right shoulder strain. The injury isn't considered serious and he should be back on the field fairly soon with little or no lingering effects. His double-play partner Scott Sizemore has been on the shelf for several weeks with a wrist injury. There is still no timetable for Sizemore's return to game action, and there are increasing rumblings (though still relatively quiet) that something surgical may be required at some point. If that happens, Scott will be out until next spring, and the effects could be felt well into next season as he tries to regain the strength in his wrist.

The Tigers Class-A affiliate in Grand Rapids has also seen its fair share of injuries. Both Chris Carlson and Andy Dirks hit the DL with broken bones in their hand. Carlson is possibly just a week away from his return, but Dirks situation has worsened. He is currently in Lakeland rehabbing the injury, and there are some questions as to whether he will return in 2008.

Now, with those still on the disabled list, shortstop Audy Ciriaco was forced to the 7-day DL with a strained right quad. Kyle Peter is also still suffering the effects of his ankle injury, and his return to the lineup is still up in the air. Rounding out the 'Caps injuries, Roger Tomas underwent a minor surgical procedure to remove the hamate bone after breaking it while swinging a bat. He is continuing his rehab and while his return is up in the air for this season, he should have no long term effects.

Still sitting on the West Michigan disabled list, reliever Zach Piccola is currently in Lakeland rehabbing some minor arm issues. There is still a hope that he may return to the mound this season, but there is currently no timetable for that return. Moving down to Oneonta, after a few dazzling starts to begin the season, right-hander Luke Putkonen is currently on the DL as he deals with a sore shoulder. It shouldn't come as a surprise considering Putkonen underwent minor shoulder surgery this spring, and was ready just in time for the start of the New York-Penn League season. Reports have indicated that the problem appears to be common post-surgical soreness, and it shouldn't be a long term concern.

On the Latin front, Carlos Cachutt and the newly signed Kery Winter are both working through some minor arm issues. Reportedly, neither has gone under the knife at this time, and both could still pitch during the 2008 season.

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