Sports Illustrated's Will Carroll and Dan Wade rolled out their yearly pre-season injury reports for each MLB team on Wednesday, and as usual, they dole out praise to Herm Schneider and his training staff. I really like this line from Dan:
"The front office may not intentionally present the med staff with a team full of problem cases, but knowing that even chronic injuries can be managed by this top-line team has to give Kenny Williams and Rick Hahn a greater sense of freedom with respect to player acquisition."
Freddy Garcia turned out to be a big part of the Sox rotation in 2009 and 2010, managing to stay healthy after a few injury-riddled years after he was dealt to Philadelphia following the 2006 season. Carlos Quentin ran into numerous injuries during his four-year tenure with the Sox, but managed to play at least 130 games in half of those seasons. Those are just two examples of many, but there's no doubting that the Sox do have a great asset in their training staff.
With that in mind, here's how the list breaks down (explanation of the system here):
Green light: Alexei Ramirez, Brent Morel, Alex Rios, Adam Dunn, Gavin Floyd
Yellow light: A.J. Pierzynski, Paul Konerko, Gordon Beckham, Alejandro De Aza, John Danks, Philip Humber, Jesse Crain, Matt Thornton
Red light: Dayan Viciedo, Jake Peavy, Chris Sale
I think concerns over Viciedo's weight are a little overblown, but Dan does make a good point that if Viciedo picks up a minor knock, he won't be able to be stashed at DH. Luckily, the Sox have Kosuke Fukudome and Brent Lillibridge on the roster, so if he needs a break, they won't lose much overall.
Sale's red light rating comes from his expected innings bump, but I'd expect the Sox to meticulously manage Sale's workload throughout the season even if they're in contention.
Peavy's an obvious red light, no matter how good he says he feels. He hasn't made more than 18 starts since 2008 and hasn't pitched a full season injury-free since winning the Cy Young in 2007.
Last thought: I was a little surprised to not see De Aza in the red light section given his promising career with the Marlins was derailed due to a string of injuries a few years ago. He was healthy all through 2011, though, and hopefully under the watch of Schneider he'll stay that way in 2012.