Cliff Lee (elbow) allowed three earned runs over four innings Wednesday at High-A Clearwater.
Lee needed just 32 pitches to get through the first three frames, fanning two and inducing six groundouts. He then got knocked around in the fourth inning, but some of the blame goes to the High-A Clearwater defenders. The veteran left-hander is on track to return from the disabled list shortly after the All-Star beak. He has been out since mid-May because of a left elbow strain.
According to CBS Sports' Jon Heyman, the Rockies intend to re-sign impending free agent Michael Cuddyer.
Which obviously means that the veteran outfielder won't be made available around the July 31 trade deadline. The Rockies have a crowded outfield (with some good, cost-controlled young players) but team owner Dick Monfort loves Cuddyer's presence in the clubhouse and the feeling is that he wouldn't attract much of a return package on the trade market because of his current left shoulder injury. Negotiations toward a contract extension could begin later this summer.
Reds purchased the contract of UTIL Kristopher Negron from Triple-A Louisville.
Negron will add some needed depth and versatility to the Reds' bench with Joey Votto, Brandon Phillips, and Billy Hamilton all fighting injuries. Negron last appeared in the majors in 2012. The 28-year-old can play all around the diamond but isn't a great hitter.
Reds optioned RHP Carlos Contreras to Triple-A Louisville.
Contreras posted a 2.08 ERA in 4 1/3 innings (three relief appearances) during his three-week stay in the majors. The right-hander should get a longer look soon.
An MRI for Royals right-handed pitching prospect Kyle Zimmer did not show any inflamation, and team doctors cleared him to resume throwing.
Zimmer missed the first six weeks of the 2014 season with shoulder discomfort and then had to be shut down again after suffering a strain to his right latissimus dorsi muscle. It seems like eons ago since he appeared in a game, but he could be back in the Double-A rotation by early August. Zimmer is unlikely to reach the major leagues this year. He could spend time in the Arizona Fall League to pick up additional innings.
Twins right-handed pitching prospect Jose Berrios allowed three hits, three walks, and five runs over five innings, striking out two batters in his debut with Double-A New Britain.
Two of the three hits were home runs, and the other was a two-run single, so Berrios' debut did not go as well as hoped. He still projects as a solid No. 3 pitcher, and is one of the few developmental bright spots for the Twins this year, due to injuries to top prospect Byron Buxton and Miguel Sano.
Brayan Pena (forearm) is in the Reds' starting lineup on Thursday afternoon against the Cubs.
Pena missed a couple of games with minor soreness in his right forearm. The 32-year-old is playing first base and batting cleanup Thursday for the injury-riddled Reds.
Brandon Phillips (thumb) is not in the Reds' starting lineup Thursday afternoon versus the Cubs.
Phillips suffered a sprained left thumb while attempting to make a diving play on defense Wednesday night. The second baseman looked to be in a great deal of pain as he was helped off the field and could be held out until after the All-Star break. Ramon Santiago is starting at second for the Reds on Thursday against Chicago.