Infection delays Alvarez's Grapefruit League debut

Infection delays Alvarez's Grapefruit League debut

JUPITER, Fla. -- Marlins right-hander Henderson Alvarez, initially scheduled to start on Sunday, will miss several days due to a right shin infection.

The infection had been bothering Alvarez for a couple of days, and when he wasn't seeing improvement, he went to the hospital to have it treated and drained.

"He's obviously down for a few days," manager Mike Redmond said. "He had to have it cleaned out. We're expecting him to be fine in a couple of days. He's probably out at least for three or four days."

Alvarez pitched live batting practice on Saturday. He wasn't in camp Sunday because he was feeling under the weather due to the infection.

Projected as the Marlins' third starter, Alvarez was scheduled to make his Grapefrut League debut Sunday against the Nationals in Viera, Fla. Lefty Brad Hand will now make that start.

Of the pitchers in camp, Alvarez entered Spring Training having already logged some innings while playing Winter Ball in Venezuela. He threw 23 innings in the offseason, which gave him a headstart on some other pitchers in terms of building up arm strength.

Last year, Alvarez's first with the Marlins, he opened the season on the disabled list with right shoulder inflammation. He made 17 starts, posted a 3.59 ERA and capped an otherwise rough year for the Marlins by tossing a no-hitter against the Tigers in the season finale.

With the infection being treated so early in camp, the Marlins are confident Alvarez will have plenty of time to get ready for the season.

"It shouldn't affect him," Redmond said. "He obviously won't make that start on Sunday, but he's pitched quite a bit. It shouldn't affect him as far as how much time it will take him to bounce back. He will get his pitches in and get him ramped up for Opening Day."

Joe Frisaro is a reporter for He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter