Tampa, Fla. – Believe or not, J.D. Martinez looks faster these days, even with a cast on his injured right foot.
Of course, that might be because he’s jetting through the clubhouse on a scooter.
“This is so much better than crutches,” he said.
Martinez is trying his best to remain upbeat, but it’s not easy. These are anxious times. He’s going to start the season on the disabled list with a sprain of the Lisfranc ligament in his right foot. And on Monday, he is expected to get the cast off, which is a pivotal moment in this process.
“If I get out of the boot and it feels good, I’ll be good to go (start rehabbing),” he said. “If I get out of the boot and it hurts, then I fly up to see Dr. (Robert) Anderson.”
Dr. Anderson, a Charlotte, N.C.-based foot and ankle specialist, tested and examined the foot last week and said the ligament was sprained, not torn or ruptured. He set an initial timetable of three-to-four weeks before Martinez could resume baseball activity.
“It’s tricky, that’s what the doc said,” Martinez said. “It’s a tricky injury and there’s no set table. So to say three-to-four weeks, that’s what I am hoping for. But it’s one of those things you have to monitor week to week.”
In the meantime, Martinez can’t do any physical activity, even with his upper body.
“I can’t sweat,” he said. “They don’t want me to sweat in the cast. It starts stinking, really itching and then it can get infected from scratching it – miserable. It’s already miserable.”
Martinez is holding out hope for a mid-to-late April return, but that seems optimistic, given that once he’s cleared, he will essentially have to start spring training over again.
“I’m just trying to stay positive and do what I can mentally to speed it up,” he said. “It just sucks. The whole offseason you train to get ready and then in two weeks you just lose it. It’s like, ‘Come on, dude.’”