Return of the Closers

Return of the Closers
With the All-Star Game and the first closer trade in the rearview, it's time to do some good old fashioned closer talk.
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Ubaldo Jimenez (ankle) threw a 35-pitch bullpen session and did some running drills Wednesday.

The throwing session was supposed to be the last step before a rehab assignment for Jimenez, who has been on the disabled list since July 11. Jimenez called it a step forward but said he didn't know where or where his next step would be. The right-hander will likely embark on a rehab assignment in the coming days, with a more clear return date to be known at that time.
Jul 23 - 7:50 PM

Denard Span finished 4-for-5 with an RBI, two runs scored and a stolen base in a loss to the Rockies on Wednesday.

Span played catalyst at the top of the Nationals lineup, doing everything he could to will the team to a comeback victory. The stolen base was his 17th of the season, and the outfielder is hitting .282/.333/.393 with 61 runs scored.
Jul 23 - 7:45 PM

Mets sent RHP Buddy Carlyle outright to Triple-A Las Vegas.

Carlyle cleared waivers and can now elect free agency. The 36-year-old may find a suitor after posting a 1.29 ERA in seven innings with the Mets.
Jul 23 - 7:38 PM

Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg said Wednesday that first base will be a "day-to-day thing" going forward.

It's a nice way of saying Ryan Howard has lost his grip on the starting first base job. Howard and Darin Ruf will platoon based on matchups and who is swinging the hotter bat, and it appears Sandberg is resolute in his willingness to see what Ruf can do over the next two months. CSN Philly's Jim Salisbury reports the Phillies have considered the possibility of releasing Howard if he can't be moved in a trade. The Phillies owe Howard, who is hitting .224/.305/.377, $60 million guaranteed over the next three years.
Source: CSN Philly
Jul 23 - 7:36 PM

A's manager Bob Melvin said Alberto Callaspo (hamstring) could be activated Sunday when first eligible.

It will come right down to the wire, as Tuesday was the first day he was able to take batting practice since being placed on the DL. The veteran infielder may not need a rehab stint before being activated.
Jul 23 - 7:20 PM

Mariners optioned RHP Taijuan Walker to Triple-A Tacoma.

Walker was recalled to make the start Wednesday afternoon, but a return to Tacoma was always on the agenda. Walker allowed two runs over five innings in the start but was once again wild, walking six and hitting Ruben Tejada in the head with a pitch. He'll continue to refine his command at the minor league level.
Jul 23 - 7:17 PM

Pirates recalled 3B Brent Morel from Triple-A Indianapolis.

Morel was recalled to take the spot of Starling Marte, who hit the disabled list with a concussion. Morel is hitting .246/.318/.342 and will serve as infield depth for the Pirates.
Jul 23 - 7:15 PM

Gerrit Cole (lat) threw 70 pitches in a simulated game Wednesday.

Cole was scheduled to throw between 50 and 60, so the fact that he hit 70 may be a sign that he's close ready for a rehab assignment. Cole said afterward that he felt good but recognized that he didn't want to rush too much in his haste to return. He'll almost certainly need a rehab assignment before rejoining the Bucs.
Jul 23 - 7:12 PM
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