Albert Almora is starting in center field and batting ninth for the Cubs on Friday in Boston.
With the designated hitter spot available, the Cubs are able to fit another one of their position player pieces into the puzzle. Kyle Schwarber will be the DH Friday.
Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press writes that the possibility of the Tigers making a closer change "does not appear to be in the near future, if at all."
Francisco Rodriguez holds a 6.23 ERA on the season and has blown two saves, while setup man Justin Wilson has thrown 9 2/3 scoreless innings with a 15/3 K/BB ratio. K-Rod is 35 and has seen his fastball velocity dip into the upper 80s, but he did save 44 games last season and manager Brad Ausmus appears likely to stick with him for a while longer. "I think people have short memories," Ausmus said. "This guy did a pretty good job for us last year. Early on, people were worried because the velocity was down. Well, the velocity is back. But at some point, he does have to pitch the way he pitched last year, because he did an outstanding job for us last year and in a city that has been looking for a closer that was consistent for a long time, he was that."
Mike Morin (neck) has yet to resume a throwing program.
Morin is a week removed from being placed on the disabled list with a stiff neck. He's eligible to return soon but obviously won't be ready in the next few days.
Cam Bedrosian (groin) has yet to begin a throwing program.
Bedrosian has been on the disabled list for nearly a week with a strained right groin but remains shut down. He's eligible to return from the DL next Tuesday, but it doesn't sound like that's going to happen. Bud Norris has been capably filling the Angels' closer role with Bedrosian out.
Andrew Bailey (shoulder) will resume throwing off a mound in the middle or end of next week.
Bailey has already been long-tossing. Working his way back from right shoulder inflammation, Bailey should rejoin the Angels' bullpen sometime next month.
Luis Valbuena (hamstring) is on track to be activated from the disabled list on Tuesday.
Valbuena took a scheduled day off at High-A Inland Empire on Thursday but will resume his rehab assignment Friday. The infielder has gone 3-for-11 at the plate so far and should serve as the Angels' regular first baseman against right-handers once he's activated.
JT Chargois has been placed on Triple-A Rochester's disabled list with a right elbow impingement.
Chargois is one of the Twins' more intriguing relief prospects, but obviously he's not going to be an option for the big club for a while.
The Padres have rescheduled their private workout with Cuban outfielder Luis Robert from Friday to Tuesday.
The reasoning for the rescheduling isn't known. Robert has already worked out privately for the Reds and A's and will hold another open showcase at some point in the next few weeks. In addition to the Reds, A's and Padres, the Cardinals and White Sox are also expected to be in on the bidding for Robert.