Rockies pitcher Antonio Senzatela was reinstated from the 10-day injured list in time to start Tuesday’s series opener against the San Diego Padres at Coors Field.
Senzatela, who recovered from a mild groin strain, entered the game 1-3 this season over six starts with a 5.76 ERA.
“He’s proven to us (he’s ready) through the work that he’s done with the strength guys, trainers, and what we’ve put him through the last week as far as the leg goes,” manager Bud Black said prior to first pitch. “We think he’s ready to go. He feels fine. He’s also been very honest with us about how he’s feeling.”
In Senzatela’s last outing, April 29 at the Diamondbacks, he threw 104 pitches and allowed three earned runs on nine hits. The right-hander got pulled after 4 2/3 innings.
“He’s got a good fastball but it has to be located. We’ve got to keep pitches out of the middle part of the plate. We’ve got to get them to the corners. We’ve got to change speeds,” Black said. “That’s one thing that Senza has really done well when he’s pitched well.”
Opponent COVID-19 issues. The Padres announced on Tuesday afternoon that shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. tested positive for coronavirus and will be placed on the injured list due to health and safety protocols. San Diego utility men Jurickson Profar and Jorge Mateo, considered close contacts, were also placed on the IL.
Padres manager Jayce Tingler told reporters during pregame that Tatis has not experienced any COVID-19 symptoms.
“You’re punched in the stomach a little bit,” Tingler said. “First of all, you want to make sure for Tatis in this situation: Is he feeling OK? It was good to see him over FaceTime and he’s feeling well. But you know he’s crushed inside, mentally.”
Meanwhile, the Rockies have managed to play in all 34 of their games this season without any team-related coronavirus issues.
“I’m not sure we did a lot different from other teams. I do know that we had a great commitment from our players, our coaching staff, and everybody downstairs here,” Black said. “A very, very, very high percentage of all of us down here have been vaccinated, and I believe everybody in the organization as well.”
Freeland and Rodgers progressing. Rockies left-hander Kyle Freeland is progressing toward a return to the club after he endured a left shoulder injury in spring training. Freeland is scheduled to start for Triple-A Albuquerque on Saturday, Black said, with an expected pitch count between 60 and 70 on the road in El Paso, Texas.
“He feels good,” Black said. “He had some simulated games here with us. He’s ready to pitch.”
Black added that infielder Brendan Rodgers (hamstring) is also on track to soon join the Triple-A club as part of his injury rehab, but there is no clear timeline for his return.
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