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Paul Konerko (back) will begin a rehab assignment with Double-A Birmingham on Thursday.

Konerko landed on the DL at the beginning of the month with a lower back strain but has made some nice strides of late and is ready to tests things out in game action. He'll remain with Birmingham through next weekend before being activated on July 22 if all goes well.
Sun, Jul 14, 2013 12:22:00 PM

Jose Abreu went 3-for-4, hitting a two-run home run and a two-run double in Tuesday's trampling of the Tigers.

Abreu added insult to injury, smoking his 31st home run in the seventh inning, accounting for the fifth and sixth runs in a seven-run frame. In the eighth, Abreu doubled in a pair of runs to make it 11-2. As a result, Abreu now leads the big leagues in RBI with 83. Just for good measure, the Cuban rookie also has a fantastic .299/.349/.632 slash line.
Jul 29 - 10:37 PM

Jon Lester has been scratched from Wednesday's scheduled start versus the Blue Jays.

He hasn't been traded yet, but this move suggests that the Red Sox believe they might be close to dealing their ace left-hander. Brandon Workman will take the ball Wednesday in Lester's place. The Pirates, Blue Jays, Mariners, Brewers, Cardinals, Dodgers, Orioles, and Marlins are among the clubs that have been linked to Lester.
Jul 29 - 10:27 PM

Marcus Stroman improved to 7-2, allowing one run over seven innings as the Blue Jays hung on to victory against the Red Sox on Tuesday.

The 23-year-old Stroman has quickly shown that he belongs in the big leagues. He held the Red Sox to six hits and two walks while striking out eight. Since moving into the rotation at the end of May, the right-hander has a 2.12 ERA in 11 starts spanning 68 innings. The talented rookie will look to keep it going on Monday, when he takes on the Astros in a road start.
Jul 29 - 10:19 PM

Jason Vargas (appendectomy) could rejoin the Royals' rotation on Saturday in Oakland.

Vargas threw a four-inning simulated game on Tuesday with no issues. "He threw four innings, 15 pitches each inning. He had much more life on his pitches, much better command on his pitches, so he looked really good," manager Ned Yost said. Yost said "we'll see" when asked about Vargas starting Saturday, but it sounds like the club is leaning that way. We'll know for sure in a day or two.
Jul 29 - 10:17 PM

Chase Utley blasted a grand slam into the upper deck in right field at Citi Field on Tuesday. It was his only hit in four plate appearances as the Phillies went on to an easy victory.

Utley took reliever Josh Edgin out to right field to break the game wide open at 6-0 in the seventh. It's the fifth grand slam of the veteran second baseman's career, and his first since 2010. The 35-year-old is having another productive year, slashing .291/.353/.439 with nine home runs and 54 RBI.
Jul 29 - 10:05 PM

Cole Hamels picked up his eighth win of the season after shutting the Mets out over eight innings on Tuesday.

Hamels' name has been bandied about in trade rumors lately, but the lefty was able to ignore the distractions and continue his run of strong pitching. Including Tuesday's outing, in which he allowed six hits, walked none, and struck out eight, Hamels has a 1.58 ERA in 12 starts since the beginning of June. Overall, he has a 2.55 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, and 133/39 K/BB ratio. Hamels will wrap up the Phillies' road trip on Sunday against the Nationals.
Jul 29 - 10:02 PM

Mike Leake finished out the month of July with a superb start, shutting the D'Backs out over 7 2/3 innings to pick up his eighth win on Tuesday.

The last two months haven't been so kind to the right-hander, as he entered June with a 2.92 ERA and exits July at 3.53. On this night, however, he was dominant, limiting the Arizona lineup to five hits while walking none and striking out eight. Leake left with two outs in the eighth after hitting Miguel Montero with a pitch to put runners on first and second, but reliever Jonathan Broxton retired Mark Trumbo to the threat. Leake will try to begin August on the right foot when he faces the Marlins on the road next Sunday.
Jul 29 - 9:51 PM

ESPN's Jerry Crasnick reports that the Diamondbacks are shopping Gerardo Parra.

The D'Backs are open for business, as they're also listening on Addison Reed, Aaron Hill, Oliver Perez, Martin Prado and Josh Collmenter. Crasnick notes that Arizona "loves Parra's makeup," but he'll be arbitration-eligible for a final time this winter and has only a .657 OPS this season.
Jul 29 - 8:53 PM

Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said Tuesday that he's "not optimistic" Starling Marte (concussion) will be activated from the disabled list when first eligible on Wednesday.

Marte appears to be feeling better, but he could go out on a rehab assignment before returning. The outfielder has been on the disabled list for the past week following post-concussion symptoms.
Jul 29 - 8:23 PM

Andy McCullough reports that the Royals have inquired on John Lackey.

It backs up a previous report from Gordon Edes of ESPNBoston.com. McCullough adds that the Red Sox are "said to be seeking a sizable return." It's not a surprise, given that Lackey has a $500,000 club option on Lackey for 2015 that's as a result of his 2012 Tommy John surgery. The rigthy boasts a 3.60 ERA, 1.23 WHIP and 116/32 K/BB ratio over 137 1/3 innings this season.
Jul 29 - 8:19 PM

CBS Sports' Jon Heyman was told by a Rays source that the team is "talking and willing" on the David Price trade front.

"[We'll] see if any teams have the desire," the source added. Heyman was told by rival executives that they believe general manager Andrew Friedman "has the guts to deal Price when the team has rallied from nowhere to the cusp of the AL pennant race. A few even suggest that he may prefer to pull the trigger." USA Today's Bob Nightengale has indicated that the Cardinals could have an offer on the table of Oscar Taveras, Shelby Miller and their competitive balance pick in exchange for Price. It appears, however, that the Rays may want even more. FOX Sports' Jon Morosi says that Price is expected to start for the Rays Wednesday afternoon "barring a dramatic turn" in trade talks.
Jul 29 - 8:02 PM




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