Scott Sizemore happy with spring progressBattling back off a pair of ACL surgeries, Sizemore eager to contribute
After all, Sizemore missed all of 2012 after tearing his left ACL in spring training, and then, after just two games last season, he once again was headed for the operating room after re-tearing the same ligament.
There are other players who have torn the same ACL twice and gone on to still be productive -- Aaron Boone for one, and another you may have heard of was a guy named Chipper -- but none of them did it in back-to-back seasons, so Sizemore had little frame of reference.
Because of where he was in terms of conditioning, you could maybe expect a sluggish start, but Sizemore has had anything but. With five games now under his belt, Sizemore is 2-for-8 with three walks and three runs scored, with no issues running the bases.
"My knee feels really good," Sizemore said Wednesday, a scheduled off day for him. "I feel like I'm getting my feet back under me out there, and it's all really about getting my timing back in the batter's box."
Defensively, Sizemore has gotten roughly the same amount of reps at second and third base, and says he feels equally comfortable at either spot -- "I've played both before so it's more feeling than learning," he said. He's had a handful of tests at both spots already, and his knee has passed with flying colors.
"Early on, I had a hard hit ball that I had to dive for in the four hole (at second base), and that same game I had a roller where I had to charge, make a tag, and then throw to first," he recalled, "and that wasn't a problem."
Sizemore got another "first" at second in Tuesday's game in Viera, having to charge hard to his left to snag a ball up the middle. No problem, as he made the play and made a great flip to Eduardo Nunez for a force at second, a difficult sequence that he said never let his mind wander to wonder.
"There was no apprehension there," he said. "That was the first time I've gone that hard to my backhand side, but I just tried to get there and make a play. I kind of made a flip to Nuney, and it was really all instinct."
At this point, he'll admit that instinct is better than anything, as it means mentally he's not in a place to worry that his knee will hold him back or fail him again.
Sizemore isn't going to Panama, but he is slated to make the trip to Clearwater for the road half of Thursday's split-squad action and hopes to play both of this weekend's games in Florida.
Every little bit helps, he says, especially now.
"I'm fighting for spot, so I have to make an impression… I still have a lot of work to do."