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Cleveland Guardians top prospects Daniel Espino, Chase DeLauter out with injuries

The pair are among MLB.com's top 100 minor league prospects, but both are expected to be sidelined for multiple months.

GOODYEAR, Ariz. — Cleveland Guardians top pitching prospect Daniel Espino will be sidelined at least two months with a right shoulder strain.

Espino, who was tracking to possibly make his big league debut this season, reported soreness after a throwing session last month. Further tests revealed the strain. The 22-year-old will be re-evaluated later in camp, but at this point the team doesn't expect him to throw for eight weeks.

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Espino struck out 35 in 18 1/3 innings at Double-A Akron last season before being sidelined with knee tendinitis.

"We've got to remind ourselves like, 'OK, he's really young,'" Guardians manager Terry Francona said. "So, patience isn't always the easiest word, but it's the best word. So, we're gonna do the right thing."

Also, outfielder Chase DeLauter, the team's top draft pick last year, will be out 4-to-5 months with a broken foot. He reported pain while running in December and imaging tests showed a fracture at the base of his toe.

DeLauter, who had bone graft surgery on Jan. 10, is in a walking boot and will be re-examined in several weeks. The 21-year-old played at James Madison and was the No. 7 overall pick in 2022.

Both players are in the top 100 of MLB.com's overall prospect rankings, with Espino coming in at 16th and DeLauter 82nd (despite never playing a professional game). Cleveland also has six additional prospects in the top 100.

Credit: AP
From left: Cleveland Guardians prospects Daniel Espino and Chase DeLauter.


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