The Texas Rangers called a premature end to Webb's live batting practice session after he told coach Mike Maddux that he could not get his right shoulder loose for regular tosses from the mound. Instead, Webb will be examined by Dr. Keith Meister and is reverting to throwing long toss only.
That is indeed a real bummer, considering that Webb appeared to be progressing after throwing three live bullpen sessions this spring. Now he's not sure how long the most recent results will set him back. The Rangers weren't expecting him to return until May at the earliest in the first place.
T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com reports that Webb — like everyone else — is wondering what's next:
"It's tough," Webb said. "It's really frustrating for me when I'm going good and one day it's like it's pretty good, and then you have a day like this. It's a little depressing. Hopefully we'll push through it and get back on the mound again in three or four more days. [...]
Webb's was supposed to throw the batting practice session on Monday, but that was cut short because of rain and wind. Webb admitted he had trouble getting loose that day as well.
"I don't know," Webb said. "It's just not a good day. I didn't feel good. Talking with Maddux, even when it was raining Monday it wasn't the greatest. I said it was probably the cold weather. I don't know. I just didn't feel as good as I did the previous four times, or whatever."
Webb's setback has a domino effect on how the Rangers set up the rest of their rotation. They've already sent Alexi Ogando(notes) back to the bullpen after a spring audition to start, and they might do the same with 2010 closer Neftali Feliz(notes).
Or, with the unhappy news on Webb, they might just stick Feliz in the rotation.
As for Webb, his future gets even more murkier — if such a thing is even possible since his last start came on opening day 2009. He's guaranteed about $3 million from the Rangers this season, but you have to assume it really isn't about money for Webb at this point.