Brandon Webb believes that he is finally healthy enough to face major league hitters, but the Arizona Diamondbacks have virtually no motivation to let him do so, as they would need to drop a player from their 40-man roster in order to accommodate the best right-handed pitcher in ‘franchise history.
Right-hander Brandon Webb believes his right shoulder is fit enough to make at least one appearance in the last week of the regular season, but issues other than health are in play.
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Because Webb is on the 60-day disabled list, the D-backs would have to designate a player for assignment to create a spot for him on the 40-man roster. Webb will be a free agent this winter, and it’s unclear whether the D-backs would want to lose a player for a week’s worth of Webb, no matter how much he has meant to the organization since coming to the majors in 2003.
Webb, general manager Kevin Towers and interim manager Kirk Gibson are to meet on Monday’s off day to discuss the situation. Webb has not pitched since opening day of 2009, and he has spent all season rehabilitating a shoulder injury after surgery in August 2009.
“I feel like I’m good to go. I’m not in midseason form. I’m in spring training mode, I would say,” said Webb, who threw a 35-pitch simulated game Saturday. “I know I’m not 100 percent. I don’t think I need to be 100 percent to go out there. Once I get into a real game, the adrenaline would make me faster.”
Webb said he would like the opportunity to show teams he is fit as he enters the offseason, and he implied that the Diamondbacks might be sabotaging his efforts to showcase his talents to other teams by holding him back from pitching.
“I don’t have any worries about pitching in a game. I think I have more to lose if I don’t go out there and pitch. Just to show everybody I am healthy and throwing. If I threw 85-88 (mph), that would be a huge positive,” Webb said.
Gibson has been an advocate of giving Webb the benefit of the doubt.
“If Webby wants to pitch, I don’t think we’ll stop him. When somebody wants to pitch, we understand that. Is he ready? It’s been a long, frustrating road for him. If it’s deemed that it’s time for him, then he’ll do it. If not, then we’ll continue on some type of program to make sure that he has an opportunity to do that.”