Some soreness in the back of prized Cincinnati Reds reliever Raisel Iglesias was enough to give us some pause. However, it was news that he was to be sidelined with elbow soreness that got our sugars up.
Y’see, it’s a delicate time to talk elbows around Reds fans. Homer Bailey has seemingly been through three of them since we last watched him pitch, with each and every prognosis he receives somehow continually degenerating into goo within a few days of the initial revelation. Then there’s Anthony DeSclafani, whose elbow recently went through the runaround of "it’s fine" to "it’ll need a break" to "we don’t have to cut it open with a knife yet, but you’re not going to see him until June at best." Jon Moscot’s elbow is a wreck we won’t see again until 2018, Zack Weiss missed all of 2016 with a linguini elbow and just recently had another procedure performed on it, and the team’s elbow epidemic reached such a zenith yesterday that a Red Reporter broke news of prospect Nick Hanson’s pending Tommy John surgery.
It's been a nonstop cycle of "any news is bad news, and bad news is worse news" on the Cincinnati elbow front, and that's what made yesterday's report on Iglesias from The Enquirer's Zach Buchanan that much more...
Well, I'll admit - I laughed my ass off at the news.
Raisel Iglesias said he hurt his elbow and hips because he fell in the shower three weeks ago.— Zach Buchanan (@ZachENQ) March 23, 2017
You presumably shower. Often, even, I hope. For as difficult as it is to relate to major leaguers hitting 500 foot dingers, standing in on a nasty breaking ball and managing to smack it the other way, or throwing a 97 mph heater with moves like Napoleon Dynamite, finding any sort of story about these phenomenal athletes that makes them seem human, and more relatable, is one that usually brings a smile or a cackle. But finding out that such a supremely talented physical specimen grabbed the face wash instead of the body wash and went full yard sale trying to quickly swap them elicits the kind of reaction that helps explain many other of life's seemingly fickle foibles.
At least, it does because he's OK, as Buchanan notes in his expanded story. It seems that the first bit of would-be debilitating news we've seen out of Reds camp in quite some time that might not actually be as bad as initially feared isn't just a simple bit of non-worst-case-scenario, but is actually one with a damn funny backstory attached, too. And perhaps that's the kind of dumb luck - both in the case of Iglesias slipping and in the case of us getting to find out he didn't contract leprosy in the process - that might well turn the tide of the nature of the news in Cincinnati's camp for the first time in a long time.
Billy Hamilton's sore achilles? We'll find out he just accidentally kicked a windmill blade while celebrating a hole-in-one playing putt putt, and he'll be back in CF in a day or two.
Joey Votto's slow Cactus League start? His March delivery of contact lenses actually got mixed up with Chris Sabo's, but once he gets his April shipment and can see he'll hit .400/.500/.bajillion once again.
Scott Schebler's mouthguard chomping? Not crippling anxiety, it turns out; rather, he's just chewing them up to feed to baby birds like a responsible parent.
Good news, it feels, is a momentum thing, and perhaps all it took to kick the fates back on the side of the Reds was Iglesias getting shampoo in his eye while reaching for the loofah in a tiny ass shower in Arizona, the Land of the Endless Strip Mall.
Cross your fingers (just don't break a knuckle doing so).