Results tagged ‘ Mark O'Neal ’

12/14 O’Neal named PBATS prez

Congrats to Cubs athletic trainer Mark O’Neal who was named president of the Professional Baseball Athletic Trainers Society at the baseball Winter Meetings last week in Orlando, Fla. O’Neal has been with the Cubs since 2004. He was promoted to head athletic trainer in ’07 and in 2012, was named director of athletic training. He spent 15 years prior to that with the Cardinals. O’Neal has been on the PBATS executive committee.

— Carrie Muskat

10/23 Bush gets extension & more

Cubs assistant GM Randy Bush received a three-year contract extension, one of several front office changes announced Tuesday. Bush, 54, was assistant general manager to Jim Hendry, and served as interim GM when Hendry was dismissed in August 2011. Bush, who played on the Twins’ two World Championship teams, helped Theo Epstein in his transition as president of baseball operations one year ago.

The Cubs also announced Louis Eljaua has been promoted to special assistant to the general manager and director of international scouting. Paul Weaver, who was the director, will now be an international crosschecker and coordinator for the Pacific Rim. Alex Suarez was promoted to assistant director of player development.

The team also said Mark O’Neal, the Cubs’ athletic trainer since 2004, will stay with the organization but in a different role.

The Cubs named Tim Cossins as the Minor League field coordinator, and were in the process of hiring new Minor League hitting and pitching coordinators. Jose Serra, who had been coordinator of Latin American scouting, was promoted to director of Dominican operations.

— Carrie Muskat

9/3 Gorzelanny update

Tom Gorzelanny has seen a replay of Jose Tabata’s line drive coming at him on Wednesday. He doesn’t want to watch it again.

“It was definitely going to my face,” Gorzelanny said Friday. “I turned my head a little bit when I saw it and put my hand up. If I didn’t have my pinkie in the way, it would’ve hit my cheek, which would’ve been pretty bad. It wouldn’t have been a good feeling.”

Gorzelanny (7-8, 3.90 ERA) will miss at least one start and possibly two because of a small incomplete hairline fracture underneath the fingernail of his left pinkie, suffered when he was hit by the ball. The lefty was wearing a small mini brace on the finger Friday and said the swelling has gone done considerably since the incident happened in the third inning of the Cubs’ game Wednesday against the Pirates.

His former Pittsburgh teammate Paul Maholm was hit in the face by a line drive in Class A ball and Gorzelanny said “it’s not pretty.”

“It’s scary and there’s nothing you can do to defend yourself,” Gorzelanny said.

However, he did try to convince athletic trainer Mark O’Neal that he could stay in the game after being hit.

“It hit me in the hand, in the pinkie, so it was sort of sore,” Gorzelanny said. “When you get hit, you get a bruise. For the first minute or two, it hurt, but I said, ‘Let me see if it goes away.’ They didn’t want to take any chances. I would’ve liked to have [stayed in] but it probably wouldn’t have been a good idea.”

— Carrie Muskat

8/16 Derrek Lee update

Cubs first baseman Derrek Lee had an injection in the epidural of his lower back to ease discomfort from a bulging disk.

“It doesn’t bother me swinging, just moving around on defense and trying to run,” Lee said Monday. “It gets pretty tight.”

Lee has homered in three straight games for the sixth time in his career, and the first time since June 18-20 last season. However, he’s hitting .251 overall. He didn’t blame his back problems on his numbers this year, saying it’s tough sometimes to bend over but it doesn’t affect his hitting.

Lou Piniella had a little trouble explaining what was wrong prior to Monday’s game.

“Derrek has a minor ball disk,” Piniella said, then corrected himself. “Minor bulge disk. How about that? ‘Ball disk.’ I feel like a mechanic.”

Lee was expected to miss two to three days. The problem is on the right side of his lower back.

“He went to [athletic trainer Mark O’Neal] during the game [Sunday] and right away we took him out of the ballgame,” said Piniella, who removed Lee from the game on Sunday as a precautionary measure.

— Carrie Muskat

8/4 Silva still being tested

Carlos Silva was able to play catch Wednesday but is still undergoing tests to determine what caused the abnormal heart rate that forced him out of his last start.

Silva was pulled Sunday after facing four batters in Colorado, spent the night at a Denver hospital, and flew back to Chicago Monday. He was being examined by cardiologist Mark Upton.

Silva was placed on the disabled list Monday to give him time to get treatmeent. But during his throw session Wednesday, he showed he hasn’t lost his stuff.

“He throws a pretty good sinker,” said Carlos Zambrano, who played catch with Silva under the watchful eye of athletic trainer Mark O’Neal. “I thought I had a good sinker but I think he’s close or similar to my sinker.”

— Carrie Muskat

6/28 Cubs help kids be active

On Tuesday, the Cubs athletic trainers, Marlon Byrd and Ted Lilly will host a PLAY campaign event at Wrigley Field. PLAY stands for “Promoting a Lifetime of Activity for Youth” and is a public awareness campaign developed by the Professional Baseball Athletic Trainers Society (PBATS) in 2004 to combat child obesity.

Through a series of fitness programs at all 30 Major League ballparks, PLAY was designed to encourage kids throughout the country to be active, eat right and sustain a healthy lifestyle. Cubs head athletic trainer Mark O’Neal will run the event, which will feature 60-70 Chicago area youths, ages 11-15, from the neighboring Sheil and Gill Parks.

— Carrie Muskat

4/25 Fan falls onto field at Miller Park

A young man fell about 14 feet from the stands onto the field in the left field corner at Miller Park during the Cubs’ batting practice on Sunday. Cubs athletic trainers Mark O’Neal and Ed Halbur rushed over to help, along with several of the players, including Sean Marshall, Tom Gorzelanny and Carlos Silva. The fan, believed to be in his 20s, was conscious when he was taken off the field in a medical cart. According to witnesses, the fan was reaching over the railing to try and catch a ball during BP and tumbled over the fence.

— Carrie Muskat

1/13/10 Ted Lilly update

Ted Lilly, who underwent arthroscopic surgery on his left shoulder, has started throwing and could throw Friday while in Chicago for the Cubs’ annual fan fest. Lilly had the debridement done on Nov. 3, deciding to do so when pain in his shoulder did not go away. He was expected to miss the first month of the regular season. Athletic trainer Mark O’Neal was able to check on Lilly recently, and pitching coach Larry Rothschild said Wednesday he hoped to have Lilly test his arm while they were in town for the Cubs Convention.

The Convention is sold out, and kicks off Friday at the Chicago Hilton.

— Carrie Muskat

12/4 Looking ahead to Indy

It appears as many as three teams are interested in Milton Bradley, and GM Jim Hendry will spend next week at the Winter Meetings in Indianapolis trying to find the right match.

The Cubs may be able to take care of some of the items on Hendry’s wish list with the right trade. The tweaks are minor for 2010, and include finding a center fielder, a veteran right-handed reliever, and a right-handed bench player who could play the outfield.

Bradley would seem to be difficult to move, partly because he is owed $21 million over the next two years and because of his lack of production on the field. But other teams have players and contracts that, for whatever reason, they want to move as well. The Cubs also could take on a player in exchange for Bradley, and then deal that player to another club.

As for center field, it would seem that Reed Johnson would be a perfect fit for the Cubs. The Cubs did not want to offer him arbitration because of budget limitations. But that doesn’t mean Johnson can’t come back. If he can’t find a better deal as a free agent, expect the two sides to resume talks.

The Cubs have had conversations with Detroit about Curtis Granderson, but it’s difficult to believe the Tigers will trade the popular center fielder.

As much as some fans would like to have Mark DeRosa back, he also is out of the team’s price range.

* Cubs athletic trainer Mark O’Neal reports Alfonso Soriano, Aramis Ramirez and Geovany Soto are sticking to their rehab routines and are making progress. Ted Lilly, who had arthroscopic surgery on his left shoulder, will be re-examined after Jan. 1, and then could begin a throwing program.

— Carrie Muskat

A PLAY day at Wrigley


Ted Lilly, Ryan Dempster and athletic trainer Mark O’Neal (standing) hosted 60 kids at Wrigley Field on Sunday as part of the PLAY campaign to talk about the importance of living healthy lives. PLAY stands for Promoting a Lifetime of Activity for Youth. The kids learned agility, strength and conditioning drills at the event, sponsored by the Professional Baseball Athletic Trainers Society.

— Carrie Muskat