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Player Notes

  • Bauer (finger) throwing to hitters Monday
    Indians manager Terry Francona said that Trevor Bauer (finger) will face "a couple hitters" during batting practice Monday.

    Advice: Bauer lasted just two-thirds of an inning during his ALCS Game 3 start before he had to be removed when the stitches in his right pinky busted. He's been given additional suture work and the hope is that he'll be ready to go for Game 2 of the World Series on Wednesday. The Indians could push him back to Game 3 on Friday if they decide he needs more time and give Josh Tomlin the ball in Game 2. Yesterday, 2:52 pm
  • Cody Anderson not on Indians' WS roster
    Cody Anderson is not on the Indians' World Series roster.

    Advice: Danny Salazar has taken his spot on the roster. Assuming Salazar is used for a start, Ryan Merritt will presumably slide into Anderson's long relief role. Yesterday, 2:38 pm
  • Biagini could move into starting role in 2017
    Blue Jays GM Ross Atkins said the club will speak to Joe Biagini about moving into a starting role.

    Advice: Biagini was one of the best finds of last year's Rule 5 Draft, posting a 3.06 ERA and 62/19 K/BB ratio in 67 2/3 innings out of the Blue Jays' bullpen after being snatched away from the Giants. He was an effective starting pitcher in San Francisco's minor league system. Yesterday, 12:20 pm
  • Osuna will be kept in closer role next season
    Roberto Osuna will be kept in a relief role for 2017.

    Advice: Blue Jays general manager Ross Atkins made that announcement Monday at his season-wrapping press conference in Toronto. Osuna came up through the minors as a starting pitcher, but he has quickly turned into one of the best young closers in baseball. The 21-year-old right-hander registered a 2.68 ERA, 0.93 WHIP, and 82/14 K/BB ratio in 74 innings during the 2016 regular season while earning 36 saves. Yesterday, 12:16 pm
  • Jays likely to exercise option on Grilli
    Blue Jays GM Ross Atkins said the team is planning to exercise Jason Grilli's $3 million option for 2017.

    Advice: Grilli finished strong with Toronto in 2016, posting a 3.64 ERA, 1.12 WHIP, and 58/19 K/BB ratio over his final 42 regular-season innings before delivering 3 2/3 scoreless frames in the playoffs. The veteran right-hander will turn 40 years old in November. Yesterday, 12:08 pm
  • Steve Johnson elects to become free agent
    Steve Johnson has elected to become a free agent.

    Advice: Johnson will probably struggle to find anything better than a minor league contract on the open market this winter after posting a 4.32 ERA and 1.44 WHIP over 16 2/3 innings at the major league level in 2016. He did have a 2.05 ERA in 22 innings with Triple-A Tacoma. Yesterday, 11:18 am
    Not Active
  • Scott Diamond elects free agency
    Scott Diamond has elected free agency.

    Advice: Diamond spent the large majority of the 2016 season with the Blue Jays' Triple-A affiliate in Buffalo, where he posted a 4.50 ERA, 1.34 WHIP, and 100/32 K/BB ratio across 166 innings. The left-hander will wind up somewhere new on a minor league deal. Yesterday, 11:01 am
    Not Active
  • Andrew Albers elects to become free agent
    Andrew Albers has elected free agency.

    Advice: Albers was pushed off the Twins' 40-man roster last week and took the option of testing the open market. The left-hander holds an underwhelming 4.41 ERA in 79 2/3 career innings at the major league level. Yesterday, 10:56 am
    Not Active
  • Braves sign Joel de la Cruz to minors deal
    Braves re-signed RHP Joel de la Cruz to a minor league contract.

    Advice: The right-hander was outrighted off the Braves' 40-man roster last week and elected to become a free agent, but he is now back with the organization on a minor league deal that includes an invitation to spring training next February in Florida. He had a 4.88 ERA in 22 appearances (nine starts) this past season with Atlanta. Yesterday, 10:45 am
    Not Active
  • Royals, Holland considering reunion?
    Rustin Dodd of the Kansas City Star suggests there could be interest in a reunion between the Royals and Greg Holland.

    Advice: Holland decided to rehab on his own rather than latch on with a team after undergoing Tommy John reconstructive elbow surgery last September. Now that he's nearing full strength, the 30-year-old right-hander and his agent Scott Boras are beginning to shop around. And a return to Kansas City sounds like a real possibility. Holland was among the most dominant relievers in baseball from 2011-2014, posting a 1.86 ERA with 358 strikeouts in 256 1/3 innings while picking up 113 saves. Yesterday, 7:00 am
  • Nationals place Barrett on outright waivers
    According to Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post, the Nationals placed Aaron Barrett on outright waivers.

    Advice: Barrett would have been eligible for arbitration for the first time this winter as a Super Two qualifier and the Nationals didn't feel like giving him a salary bump after he missed the entire 2016 season following Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. Barrett fractured that same elbow in July while rehabbing and could miss much of 2017. He had a promising rookie year with Washington in 2014, but it's been a frustrating road since. Yesterday, 6:41 am
    60-Day DL
  • BoSox 'seriously' considering Buchholz option
    Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that the Red Sox are "seriously thinking about" picking up Clay Buchholz's $13.5 million option for 2017.

    Advice: Buchholz has been frustratingly inconsistent and has often dealt with injuries, finishing 2016 with a 4.78 ERA. However, Heyman notes that in a weak free agent pitching market it wouldn't be a surprise if Buchholz could land a multi-year contract. The Red Sox might see spending $13.5 million for one year in order to retain some solid rotation depth as a worthy move. Buchholz, who turned 32 back in August, would be owed a $500,000 buyout if the option was declined. Sunday, 5:35 am
  • Dodgers will attempt to re-sign Kenley Jansen
    Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports expects the Dodgers to "make a nice attempt" to re-sign impending free agent Kenley Jansen.

    Advice: Jansen just turned 29 a month ago and has been one of the best closers in baseball for years, so there will certainly be competition for his services. The Dodgers can outspend pretty much anyone, though, so if they're committed to retaining Jansen they can probably make it happen. The club will make Jansen a qualifying offer, so they'll pick up a draft pick if they wind up losing their closer. Sunday, 5:20 am
  • Phillies could make Vincent Velasquez available's Todd Zolecki said he would not be surprised if the Phillies looked to trade Vincent Velasquez this offseason.

    Advice: The Phillies entertained offers for Velasquez around the trade deadline but never pulled the trigger. Velasquez got off to a solid start this year but ran out of gas in the second half (5.33 ERA after the All-Star break). Velasquez arrived in Philly last offseason in a trade that sent star closer Ken Giles to Houston. The rebuilding Phillies could probably land a nice haul of prospects for Velasquez, who turned 24 in June. Saturday, 3:38 pm
  • Giovanni Soto designated for assignment
    Cubs designated LHP Giovanni Soto for assignment.

    Advice: The move clears a roster spot for Kyle Schwarber, who has moved his rehab to the Arizona Fall League in hopes of returning for the World Series (if the Cubs make it). Soto spent all of 2016 at the Triple-A level, compiling a disappointing 5.14 ERA over 33 outings for Iowa. The 25-year-old made six relief appearances for Cleveland in 2015. Saturday, 2:55 pm
    Not Active
  • Cafardo: Nats to 'go hard' for Mark Melancon
    According to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, the Nationals are expected to "go hard" for Mark Melancon in free agency.

    Advice: Melancon was dominant in his two-month stretch with Washington, converting 17-of-18 save chances to go with a magnificent 1.82 ERA. The soon-to-be free agent should have a robust market this winter, so the Nats will have to pay top dollar to retain him. Per Cafardo, Melancon would welcome being used in an Andrew Miller-type role as long as he earns closer money. Cafardo believes Melancon could draw interest from the Red Sox, who he played for in 2012. Saturday, 2:04 pm
  • Carter Capps ahead of schedule in recovery
    Carter Capps (elbow) is reportedly ahead of schedule in his recovery from Tommy John surgery and could be ready for the start of the 2017 season.

    Advice: The hard-throwing right-hander has been throwing aggressively for nearly a month now. A dominant arm in the late innings, Capps could be looked at as a solution in the ninth inning for the Padres in 2017. Saturday, 10:33 am
    60-Day DL
  • Braves ink Sam Freeman to minors deal
    Braves signed LHP Sam Freeman to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

    Advice: Freeman, 29, holds a 3.87 ERA with nearly a strikeout per inning over parts of five big league seasons, but he's always had awful control. However, as a lefty who throws in the mid-90s, he's certainly worth a shot on a minor league contract. Friday, 11:45 am
    Not Active
  • Chapman gives up two runs in ninth
    Aroldis Chapman gave up two runs in the ninth inning in Game 5 of the NLCS against the Dodgers on Thursday.

    Advice: The Cubs had a six-run lead going into the bottom of the ninth, so they didn't really need to use him, but he hadn't pitched since Game 2 on Sunday, so Joe Maddon apparently wanted to get him some work. Chapman gave up two hits and a walk before finally snuffing out the last-gasp rally from the Dodgers. He threw 19 pitches and his availability shouldn't be an issue as the series moves to Chicago this weekend. Thursday, 9:59 pm
  • Blanton gives up go-ahead homer in loss
    Joe Blanton gave up a go-ahead two-run homer to Addison Russell in the sixth inning in Thursday’s Game 5 loss to the Cubs.

    Advice: Blanton is one of the reasons the Dodgers have managed to make it this far this season, as he posted a 2.48 ERA and 80/26 K/BB ratio over 80 innings during the regular season. He also pitched well (and often) during the NLDS against the Nationals. But he might be running on fumes at this point. The veteran right-hander has allowed seven runs on seven hits (including three homers and a double) and two walks in three innings so far during the NLCS. Thursday, 9:30 pm
    Player Note
    Joe Blanton LAD - SP,RP
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