Wired: Top Pickups for Week 19

Wired: Top Pickups for Week 19
Waiver Wired is back heading into Week 19. Blasts from the past like Ersan Ilyasova, Danilo Gallinari and Andrea Bargnani are relevant again.
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Rockies manager Walt Weiss announced Sunday that Jordan Lyles will start Wednesday's Cactus League opener against the Diamondbacks.

The 24-year-old is locked into the Rockies rotation after posting a 4.33 ERA, 1.37 WHIP and 90/46 K/BB ratio in 126 2/3 innings a season ago. Jhoulys Chacin will follow and pitch on Thursday, with Kyle Kendrick taking on the Angels on Friday and Jorge De La Rosa battling the Cubs on Saturday.
Source: MLB.com
Mar 1 - 7:41 PM

Chris Johnson is working on a mechanical adjustment to his swing, lowering his hands to allow for a more consistent swing path.

It's an effort to return to the form he displayed in 2013 when he competed for the National League batting title. The 30-year-old is looking to rebound from a disappointing 2014 season where he hit just .263/.292/.361 with 10 homers and 58 RBI.
Source: MLB.com
Mar 1 - 7:35 PM

White Sox top prospect Carlos Rodon is expected to take Chris Sale's spot in the White Sox rotation for Cactus League play.

White Sox pitching coach Don Cooper said to expect Rodon on the hill when the White Sox take on the Padres in Peoria on Friday. While it's a chance for the young left-hander to showcase his skills, he certainly won't be cracking the White Sox rotation on Opening Day. The 22-year-old posted a 2.92 ERA and 38/13 K/BB ratio over 24 1/3 innings in 2014, including three starts at Triple-A Charlotte.
Source: MLB.com
Mar 1 - 6:30 PM

Matt Wieters (elbow) is scheduled to begin catch and throw drills on Monday.

Wieters isn't expected to be cleared to begin throwing with any real force until March 17, but Monday represents a big step in his recovery. To this point, he has been limited to playing long toss. So long as he avoids any setbacks, there's no reason to expect he won't be behind the dish when the O's open up the regular season.
Mar 1 - 6:19 PM

Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez announced Sunday that Wandy Rodriguez will start Wednesday's Grapefruit League opener against the Mets.

The veteran southpaw, who is battling for the fifth and final spot in the Braves rotation, is scheduled to throw two innings. He will be followed in Wednesday's start by Chien-Ming Wang who is challenging for the same role. Julio Teheran will get the nod against the Tigers on Thursday, putting him on track to start on Opening Day.

In Sunday's lone spring game, Aaron Altherr went 2-for-4 with an RBI double and a steal as the Phillies lost to the University of Tampa 6-2.

The Phillies were up 2-0 following fine performances from Paul Clemens and Rule 5 pick Andrew Oliver, but Phillipe Aumont gave up a run in the sixth and Nefi Ogando and Hector Neris combined to allow five in the seventh, leading to a somewhat embarrassing loss. The good news was that Ruben Amaro's nephew, Andrew, had a single and a bases-loaded walk for the Spartans. The Phillies didn't use any probable regulars in the contest.
Mar 1 - 5:08 PM

Alex Guerrero indicated in an interview with Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com that he has no intention of returning the minor leagues.

The 28-year-old stated, "I don't want to go down. I'm not going down. I feel like I can get better here at this level and play every day." Guerrero signed a four-year, $28 million deal with the Dodgers before the 2014 that included a clause that he can't be optioned to the minor leagues without his permission after his first season. That means the Dodgers will be forced to keep him on the roster in a reserve role, trade him elsewhere or release him.
Source: MLB.com
Mar 1 - 5:05 PM

Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon said Sunday that Austin Jackson will see extra rest this season in an effort to keep him fresh.

The 28-year-old outfielder appeared to wear down as the 2014 season neared its conclusion, hitting just .191 in September. While he struggled in his 54 games with the Mariners to finish the season, McClendon believes that Jackson is a dynamic talent and will be a catalyst atop the M's lineup in 2015.
Source: MLB.com
Mar 1 - 4:50 PM
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