Jesus Luzardo may be away from the Oakland A’s due to his quarantine, but he is doing his best to make sure he will be ready to go once he is cleared.
When Jesus Luzardo tested positive for COVID-19, and had been placed in quarantine, it was a major blow to the Oakland A’s aspirations for the coming season. The phenom was expected to be a key part of the rotation, potentially emerging as the ace of the staff by the end of the season. His indefinite absence was amongst the worst news that the A’s could receive.
The expectation was that Luzardo would need time to get back into baseball shape once his quarantine was over. He would likely be spending time with the A’s taxi squad, potentially taking three to four weeks to ramp back up to readiness. Depending on when he returns, and with the season lasting just over ten weeks, that is a major blow to the rotation.
Instead, Luzardo is hoping to be back as quickly as possible. To that end, he is doing as many exercises as possible while in quarantine, looking to keep his arm stretched out and ready for the season.
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This is easier said than done. Unless Luzardo is throwing bullpens in his garage or finding some way to throw a baseball, he will still need time to build his arm back up and to get ready for the season. Given the yet to be determined length of his quarantine, anything Luzardo can do to keep his arm in shape will help.
Depending on how long it will take, Luzardo could also simply return to the A’s as a member of the bullpen. He thrived in that role in September, allowing just two runs on five hits and three walks in 12 innings while striking out 16 batters. Luzardo could be quite a weapon in that role if the A’s do not want to wait for him to be stretched out again.
This all depends on how long Luzardo will take. He is doing his part, at least as best as he can, to remain in as close to game shape as possible while in quarantine. But there is only so much that he can do there while waiting to receive those consecutive negative test results.
Jesus Luzardo is doing his best to keep his arm in shape. The Oakland A’s have to hope that this means he will return to the rotation shortly after being deemed healthy.