Fernando Tatis Jr. cleared for baseball activities after surgeries, but remains suspended through Opening Day

Former San Diego Padres shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. has been cleared to start playing baseball after undergoing two shoulder and wrist surgeries, reports The Athletic. , has been given an 80-game performance-enhancing drug suspension and will not be eligible to play until April 20, but his rehabilitation work is progressing on schedule.

Padres GM AJ Preller said at the Winter Meeting last month, “He’s in a good place according to what our medical staff are saying, which is the doctors who are testing. More in the coming weeks.” I think we’re going to learn a lot.I think the goal going into January is to see him play more baseball.I think we’ll know more in the next two weeks and the beginning of the season.” However, he is well on his way to spring training. ”

Tatis, 24, injured his left wrist in a motorcycle accident last offseason. He had surgery in his March and his second surgery in October to further stabilize his wrist. In between his wrist surgeries, Tatis was suspended in August and underwent nasty left shoulder surgery in September. This shoulder sidelined him many times early in this career.

Tatis hasn’t played in an official game since the end of the 2021 season and is returning from multiple major surgeries, so his build-up and hitting progress will take some time. He’s eligible to play a spring training game during his suspension, and the Padres hope Tatis will play a few games to determine if he’s ready and he can prepare for the season. .

of course, Padres signed Xander Bogaerts to 11-year deal this offseason, plus Ha-Seong Kim played well at shortstop last year, so it’s unclear exactly where Tatis will play when he returns. He appeared in his 24 games in the outfield in his 2021, and with the infield packed, Tatis was able to move to the lawn full-time. Given his speed and occasionally erratic pitching, that might be the best place for him.

“I’ve talked to him privately about the position. He wants to win. That’s number one. We want him back on the field,” Preller told ESPN in November. rice field. “We make sure he’s really clear on what’s expected of him. Looking at what the roster options are and how he fits in, definitely his feedback. Getting him back on the field is a priority, but as we get into the next few months, we’ll know more about what position that will be.”

Tatis finished third in National League MVP voting in 2021 with a .282/.364/.611 batting average and has 42 home runs in 2021. 292/.369/.596 hitter with 81 home runs and his 13.6 WAR in his 273 career games over injuries and suspensions.

San Diego advanced to the NLCS last season with an 89-73 record. This is his deepest postseason run in the franchise since his pennant-winning 1998 season win. FanGraphs puts the club’s competitive balanced tax salary at $267.3 million after adding the likes of Bogaerts, Matt Carpenter, Seth Lugo and Nick Martinez. They’re serious about winning the franchise’s first World Series title.

The Padres signed Tatis to a massive 14-year, $340 million extension in February 2021. The contract will last until his 2036, which is his 35th season.

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