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Astros pitching prospect Mark Appel tossed five scoreless innings Wednesday in his Double-A debut.

Appel was promoted to Double-A Corpus Christi this week despite posting a hideous 9.74 ERA in 44 1/3 innings at High-A Lancaster. And it was clearly the right move. The 23-year-old right-hander walked four in his debut but also struck out four and gave up only two hits. He is likely to finish out the 2014 season at the Double-A level but could move to Triple-A at the start of 2015. Appel was the first overall pick (out of Stanford) in the 2013 MLB Amateur Draft.
Thu, Jul 31, 2014 08:25:00 AM

Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said he's hopeful Odubel Herrera (hamstring) will be able to return to the starting lineup Thursday in San Francisco.

Herrera is sitting out again Wednesday afternoon against the Padres after suffering a mild left hamstring strain on Monday night, though he could be used as a pinch-hitter in the series finale at Petco Park. Nick Williams is starting in center field, Rhys Hoskins is in left field, and Cameron Perkins is in right.
Aug 16 - 1:43 PM

Kyle Seager (illness) is out of the Mariners' lineup again on Wednesday.

Seager has a stomach virus and will miss his second consecutive game. Danny Valencia is starting at third base and batting sixth Wednesday afternoon against the Orioles and right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez.
Aug 16 - 1:22 PM

Jered Weaver has announced his retirement from baseball.

Weaver opened the season 0-5 with a 7.44 ERA in nine starts before landing on the disabled list in May due to a hip injury that continues to plague him. "While I've been working hard to get back on the mound, my body just will not allow me to compete like I want to," Weaver said in a statement Wednesday. "Many thanks to the Padres organization for the opportunity to play in the amazing city of San Diego. You have been very professional and respectful during this process and I really appreciate that." The 34-year-old right-hander spent 12 seasons in the major leagues between the Angels and Padres, compiling a 150-98 record and 3.63 career ERA. He had three straight top-five finishes in the American League Cy Young Award balloting back in 2010-2012.
Aug 16 - 1:06 PM

Jayson Werth (foot) is reporting to the Nationals' spring training facility in West Palm Beach, Florida.

He'll work out there for the next couple of days before possibly embarking on a minor league rehab assignment over the weekend. Werth has been on the disabled list since early June with a bone bruise in his left foot. The veteran outfielder should be ready for activation around the final week of August or first week of September, assuming he can avoid setbacks.
Aug 16 - 11:33 AM

Orlando Arcia (back) remains out of the Brewers' starting lineup on Wednesday afternoon.

Arcia was scratched from Tuesday's lineup due to back spasms and he will take another day of rest. Eric Sogard is starting at shortstop and batting leadoff against Pirates right-hander Gerrit Cole.
Aug 16 - 10:58 AM

Andrew Heaney (elbow) is scheduled to make his season debut Friday in Baltimore.

Heaney got the go-ahead after throwing a bullpen session in front of Angels coaches and trainers on Tuesday at Nationals Park. The 26-year-old left-hander is nearly 14 months removed from Tommy John reconstructive elbow surgery and posted a promising 2.60 ERA and 29/5 K/BB ratio over 27 2/3 innings on his six-start minor league rehab assignment. He's looking like a potential fantasy sleeper for the stretch run.
Aug 16 - 10:55 AM

Nationals placed OF Brian Goodwin on the 10-day disabled list, retroactive to August 14, with a left groin strain.

The injury comes with bad timing for Goodwin, who had been drawing regular starts in the Nationals' outfield. He owns a cool .811 OPS with 13 home runs and six stolen bases in 74 games this season. Alejandro De Aza has been called up from Triple-A Syracuse in a corresponding 25-man roster move.
Aug 16 - 10:47 AM

James Paxton (pectoral) hopes to begin playing catch this weekend.

Paxton remains in shutdown mode with a strained left pectoral muscle, but he told reporters Tuesday that he's feeling much better and he has a check-up exam scheduled for this Friday in Seattle. We should have a clearer picture about his timetable by Saturday. Paxton hit the disabled list on August 11 with a stellar 12-3 record, 2.78 ERA, 1.08 WHIP, and 138/33 K/BB ratio in 119 2/3 innings this season. The 28-year-old southpaw also missed time in May with a forearm strain.
Aug 16 - 9:01 AM

Joey Gallo hit his ninth homer of the month and 34th of the year Tuesday against the Tigers.

He also walked and scored a second run. That run is notable; he'd been driven in just once in his previous 17 games. The Rangers have slowly moved him up in the lineup, but they still won't go any higher than fifth with him.
Aug 15 - 11:52 PM

Luis Castillo had to settle for a no-decision but was superb Tuesday night against the Cubs, whiffing seven batters over six shutout frames in the Reds' 2-1 victory.

Castillo permitted only two hits -- both singles -- on the night while issuing a pair of walks. He had thrown only 80 pitches through his six shutout innings, but the Reds elected to pinch-hit for him in the top of the seventh when they had a scoring opportunity. Castillo has tossed four straight quality starts and has not given up more than four runs in any outing despite facing a brutal schedule. He takes on the Braves in Atlanta this weekend.
Aug 15 - 11:35 PM

Zach Davies limited the Pirates to one run over 6 2/3 innings to pick up his 14th victory on Tuesday.

We're three-quarters of the way through the season and Zach Davies has a realistic chance at 20 wins. He hasn't been great; his 4.26 ERA is worse than his 3.97 mark from last year, when he went 11-7 in 28 starts. His strikeouts are down and his walks are up. Still, he has taken a step forward this last month and the run support has been there all year long.
Aug 15 - 11:25 PM




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