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Grady Sizemore makes two leaping catches, manages not to injure himself

Mike Oz
Big League Stew

Grady Sizemore, the oft-injured, former-star outfielder, had himself a beautiful day at the ballpark Monday, as he continues to try to prove himself to Boston Red Sox.

Sizemore hasn't played since 2011, but he's only 31, so a comeback isn't out of the question. He has a reputation at this point in his career for being frail, so it's definitely something to note when Sizemore can make two difficult, leaping catches like he did Monday and not injure himself.

Particularly the one above where he slammed into the outfield wall, then got up like a non-habitually injured centerfielder would. Later, Sizemore told Ian Browne of MLB.com:

"It kind of crept on me before I knew it was there," Sizemore said. "The wind was blowing pretty good. I hit [the wall] pretty hard, but it hit me so fast I wasn't able to brace. But it didn't hurt too bad. I'm sure I'll be a little sore tomorrow, but I was lucky to catch it and come out with no injuries."

In addition, Sizemore had three hits at the plate, enough to make Red Sox manager John Farrell say after the game: "Maybe it was a little bit of a flashback to how good Grady was for a number of years."

Sizemore is hitting .381 this spring with eight hits in 21 at-bats spread over seven games. A good batting average and a few nice catches won't be enough to make the Red Sox forget about Jacoby Ellsbury, who they lost to free agency. But there's certainly a need in Boston for Sizemore if he can stay healthy and be even remotely close to the player he was in 2005-2008 with the Cleveland Indians. The Red Sox had enough faith to sign him to a major-league contract worth $750K with a host of incentives.

"I'm just happy to be healthy, be out there playing and be able to do those things," said Sizemore. "Hopefully I can build off of that, put these days together, back-to-back, and still feel good, stay healthy and stay at it."

As painful as it sounds, Sizemore could stand to crash into a few more walls this spring and get back up on his feet afterward. More than anything, he needs to prove to the Red Sox (and to baseball in general) that he's durable.

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Mike Oz is an editor for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at mikeozstew@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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