PHOENIX, AZ - MARCH 17: Pitcher Shaun Marcum #18 of the Milwaukee Brewers throws a pitch against the Chicago White Sox during the first inning of the spring training game at Maryvale Baseball Park on March 17, 2011 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

Shaun Marcum Fighting Through Shoulder Tightness

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Shaun Marcum To Miss One Start With Shoulder Tightness

The Brewers had to be concerned when starting pitcher Shaun Marcum recently complained of shoulder tightness. Already without ace Zack Greinke for a time, the last thing Milwaukee needed was another injury to an important starting pitcher - much less a potentially significant injury.

Fortunately, there appears to be good news. Writes Michael Hunt:

Roenicke said Saturday that Marcum would skip his next spring start scheduled for Tuesday, but is expecting Marcum to make his final start of the spring and then assume his spot in the rotation when the regular season begins.

Marcum spent some time with the team trainers, and when they worked on his shoulder he didn't feel as much discomfort as before. He seems to be making progress, and while he isn't a lock for his final spring start, it appears to be likely. He's set to throw a bullpen, make that start, and be ready for the beginning of the season.

For now, the Brewers look to have avoided disaster.

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Shaun Marcum Fighting Through Shoulder Tightness

The Milwaukee Brewers worked hard to put together an impressive starting rotation over the winter. They traded good value for Kansas City's Zack Greinke, and they traded good value for Toronto's Shaun Marcum, intending to use those two to sandwich Yovani Gallardo. Unfortunately, Greinke hurt himself playing basketball. And now? Now Marcum is complaining of shoulder tightness.

Marcum says he's dealt with some tightness in his shoulder all spring long. And you wouldn't necessarily know it from looking at his numbers, as he has 11 strikeouts to go with one walk. He says that, if it were August or September, he'd pitch through the pain without saying a word. But while Marcum may not be very concerned, Buster Olney quoted a scout who gunned Marcum at 86mph on Thursday night, which is a slight tick below where Marcum usually sits. And you just never want to hear a pitcher talking about an unusual sensation in his shoulder.

So this is a situation to monitor. Marcum isn't worrying, but the organization would prefer that he feel fine and dandy instead of pitching through discomfort so soon. While there's no reason to assume the worst, there is reason to keep an eye on this story and see how it develops.

Marcum's never dealt with any shoulder problems before. He has had surgeries on his elbow and knee.

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