Angels shut down pitcher Griffin Canning because of elbow soreness
The Angels announced Friday that Canning would receive an injection of biological substances in an effort to heal elbow joint inflammation that cropped up after his first spring training start.
Canning will start the season, which opens March 26, on the injured list. That will mark his third time being designated as inactive because of elbow issues since August.
As they exercise caution with one of their most promising pitchers, the Angels might be forced to carry at least one inexperienced starter on their opening day roster to follow Andrew Heaney, Julio Teheran and Dylan Bundy in the rotation. Youngsters Patrick Sandoval and Jose Suarez, who were both called up last season prematurely, have impressed new manager Joe Maddon this spring. Suarez has thrown eight innings across three games and allowed only one run and three hits. He struck out four batters in his start against the Kansas City Royals on Friday. Sandoval, slowed by the flu early in spring training, has made only one Cactus League appearance.
Brian “Bubba” Harkins, the Angels’ longtime visitors clubhouse attendant, was fired for selling pitchers a concoction that made balls easier to grip.
The Angels have treated several pitchers treated for elbow injuries with injections in recent years. Heaney, JC Ramirez and Shohei Ohtani each received platelet-rich plasma shots to try to avoid Tommy John surgery. None escaped the knife. Former Angels pitcher Garrett Richards was given a PRP injection and received stem-cell treatment before surrendering to an elbow operation.
There is no evidence that Canning faces a problem as serious as theirs. Canning underwent an MRI last week that revealed only normal wear and tear on his ulnar collateral ligament.
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