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Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Cleared vision helps Tampa Bay Rays’ Casey Kotchman revive career

Pretty sure I once saw Tear Duct Pus open for The Dogmatics.

You can’t hit what you can’t see. That time-honored baseball axiom was never more real to Casey Kotchman than when he stood at the plate inspecting pitches last season.

“It was kind of like looking through a dirty windshield wiper,” he said.

After batting .217 in 125 games for the Mariners, the second-worst average of his career, the former Seminole High star made an appointment in October with Dr. Tom Tooma, a pioneer in lasik who had performed the surgery on Kotchman in Newport Beach, Calif., in 2004.

Kotchman, 28, was diagnosed with a bacterial infection, and Tooma squeezed pus out of both tear ducts. Several followup visits ensured the problem was corrected.

“My vision has been pristine so far, to say the least,” Kotchman said. “And I’m trying to get out of the bad habits I got into mechanically at the plate last year.”

Repoz Posted: May 10, 2011 at 03:10 AM | 29 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: rays

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   1. Stormy JE Posted: May 10, 2011 at 03:36 AM (#3822905)
Manager Joe Maddon knew when the Rays signed Kotchman, he wouldn't forget to bring his glove. He has a .998 fielding percentage at first base, the highest in major-league history among players with at least 500 games.

Did Kotchman's seeing eye dog fetch all those ground balls hit to the right side?
   2. cardsfanboy Posted: May 10, 2011 at 03:44 AM (#3822909)
wouldn't you think eye tests would be mandatory at least 4 times a year on the amount of money they are paying these guys. The Cardinals just had an article written about one of their prospects(Tommy Pham) who needed specialized contacts to fix his unusual shaped eyes.
   3. Banta Posted: May 10, 2011 at 03:51 AM (#3822914)
Tooma squeezed pus out of both tear ducts.

This sounds oddly satisfying. Like popping a massive zit.
   4. Ron J Posted: May 10, 2011 at 03:52 AM (#3822915)
This seems like a strange thing not to mention to the team doctor.

And geez, puss out of both tear ducts? Sounds like that should hurt!
   5. Jim Wisinski Posted: May 10, 2011 at 04:17 AM (#3822930)
wouldn't you think eye tests would be mandatory at least 4 times a year on the amount of money they are paying these guys. The Cardinals just had an article written about one of their prospects(Tommy Pham) who needed specialized contacts to fix his unusual shaped eyes.


Matt Diaz went through the Chuck Lamar Rays and the Royals before the Braves got him and identified his vision as a problem. Probably happens more often than you'd think, especially with organizations lacking in imagination and the ability to think their way through problems.
   6. Dan Szymborski Posted: May 10, 2011 at 04:20 AM (#3822932)
I've had pus come out of the tear ducts during a head cold. It's shockingly gross the first time it happens.
   7. Infinite Yost (Voxter) Posted: May 10, 2011 at 04:55 AM (#3822952)
Tooma squeezed pus out of both tear ducts.



UGHGUGHGUGHGHGHGHGHGUGHGUGHGUGHGUGH
   8. Ray (CTL) Posted: May 10, 2011 at 05:02 AM (#3822959)
His eyes are in the best shape of their lives.
   9. LionoftheSenate Posted: May 10, 2011 at 05:23 AM (#3822985)
I think Bill Hall once used this excuse...
   10. Greg K Posted: May 10, 2011 at 05:31 AM (#3822993)
You'd figure some of these guys would have seen Major League.
   11. Sam M. Posted: May 10, 2011 at 05:52 AM (#3823016)
You know, maybe pus filled tear ducts could explain the horror that is Angel Hernandez. Wouldn't you love to see Kotchman suggest it to him after a particularly egregious strike call? "Hey, Angel. Squeeze the pus out of your tear ducts and see the game. Worked for me, you ####### dirtball." It'd be the greatest ejection in history.
   12. shoewizard Posted: May 10, 2011 at 05:55 AM (#3823019)
Nice to see him rebounding. Of course he still hits everything on the ground and won't ever hit many HR, and he currently has a .375 BABIP fueling his B.A. But he is a better player than the numbers he put up last year, so good for him.
   13. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: May 10, 2011 at 09:02 AM (#3823040)
Reading about pus coming out of tear ducts is exactly how I wanted to start my day.
   14. Rafael Bellylard: The Grinch of Orlando. Posted: May 10, 2011 at 10:28 AM (#3823042)
Somehow my morning oatmeal just lost it's appeal.
   15. Arch Stanton Posted: May 10, 2011 at 10:30 AM (#3823043)
After all these years, it actually was a Tooma.
   16. Harvey Berkman Posted: May 10, 2011 at 12:22 PM (#3823060)
After all these years, it actually was a Tooma.


Coke. And soopasize it.
   17. Walt Davis Posted: May 10, 2011 at 01:19 PM (#3823074)
pus filled tear ducts

Probably the root cause of Jose Cardenal's eyelid problem.
   18. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: May 10, 2011 at 01:54 PM (#3823085)
After batting .217 in 125 games for the Mariners, the second-worst average of his career

You know, if .217 is only the SECOND worst mark of your career- you're career is not going as you'd hoped...
   19. franklloyd Posted: May 10, 2011 at 02:32 PM (#3823116)
Watching Krotchmann flail in 2010 helped clear the tear ducts of thousands of Mariners fans.
   20. TVerik. Old Java Rodney. Posted: May 10, 2011 at 02:33 PM (#3823117)
“It was kind of like looking through a dirty windshield wiper,” he said.


Now looking through a clean windshield wiper is the epitome of easy.
   21. Stormy JE Posted: May 10, 2011 at 02:43 PM (#3823131)
Perhaps Frenchy should have the puss drained from his eyes during every All-Star break?
   22. BFFB Posted: May 10, 2011 at 02:45 PM (#3823134)
I want an invisible windshield wiper!
   23. flournoy Posted: May 10, 2011 at 02:56 PM (#3823146)
If you go to Kotchman's BR page and click "Hide Partial," you can pretend that he never played for the Braves. Ahhh... much better.
   24. Shredder Posted: May 10, 2011 at 03:27 PM (#3823171)
Wow, a JT Snow article one day, a Casey Kotchman article the next? Which next former Angels first-baseman busted prospect will be next? Can a Lee Stevens article be very far behind?
   25. Kyle S at work Posted: May 10, 2011 at 03:31 PM (#3823176)
Which would mean that we traded Mark Teixiera for Steven Marek and 2 months of Adam LaRoche. Seems like a good deal.
   26. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: May 10, 2011 at 03:48 PM (#3823202)
nd 2 months of Adam LaRoche.


It was a good deal since it was 2nd half LaRoche, and he hit .325/.401/.557 those two months (.295/.354/.535 career 2nd half)
   27. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 10, 2011 at 04:30 PM (#3823243)
I think Eric Hosmer was majorly struggling as a prospect til he got an eye test and they got him some contacts and he's been a stud ever since.

Then there's Ricky Vaughn.
   28. Khrushin it bro Posted: May 10, 2011 at 10:26 PM (#3823418)
   29. BWV 1129 Posted: May 11, 2011 at 12:29 AM (#3823546)
In seriousness, Kotchman's career arc has been very strange (even if you remove the couple of months he played with the viral infection, where had he been handled competently he would never have seen the field). I think there have always been some flaws in his swing and approach, but I never thought they were extreme enough to cause the trouble he's had. I hope at least some of this bounce-back is legit.

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