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According to Marc Carig and David Lennon of Newsday, the Mets are weighing a pursuit for Japanese pitching and hitting sensation Shohei Otani.

Every team should at least be making an effort, as Otani will be subject to international spending limits, which would cap a potential contract at $3.5 million. Interested teams would also have to submit a $20 million posting fee. The Mets are expected to have a drop in payroll next year, but this is the sort of deal they can afford. And as Carig and Lennon note in the story, while Otani's initial salary will be depressed due to MLB's rules, New York could be an attractive destination due to the potential endorsement opportunities. Of course, the Yankees can also offer that. It promises to be a fascinating process from a variety of perspectives.
Source: Newsday
Tue, Nov 14, 2017 09:40:00 PM

Pedro Strop was asked to get the final out Thursday and was up to the task, earning his third save in preserving the Cubs' 9-6 win over the Cardinals.

With closer Brandon Morrow hitting the disabled list Thursday, there was some interest in how Cubs manager Joe Maddon would deploy his bullpen in a close game. How he did tells a story: Steve Cishek, viewed by some as a possible fill-in closer, pitched the seventh inning with a two-run lead; Carl Edwards Jr. entered in the eighth and was almost able to finish it off but yielded a run with two outs in the ninth; and needing a stopper, Maddon turned to Strop to finish it. Morrow's health is a constant question mark and Strop has been terrific this year, posting a 2.50 ERA, 1.06 WHIP and 39/14 K/BB ratio over 39 2/3 innings of work, so he's worth adding everywhere, even if Morrow's stay on the shelf is abbreviated. Strop could still pick up a few saves between now and Morrow's return.
Jul 19 - 11:39 PM

Brandon Morrow underwent an MRI on his injured biceps.

Morrow said there was "stuff in there," though nothing that would require a long-term shutdown. "This is a new one, but it’s manageable," said the Cubs closer. "We have a good idea of how to proceed and I’m hopeful that it’s just a muscle strain that can clear up." There was some thought that Morrow could be back when first eligible but that's probably a long shot. Pedro Strop earned the save for Chicago on Thursday night and could earn more opportunities in the ninth inning with Morrow sidelined until further notice.
Jul 19 - 11:35 PM

Indians manager Terry Francona said Edwin Encarnacion (hand) is "all good."

Encarnacion exited Sunday's game after taking a pitch off his left hand/forearm but it sounds like he'll be ready to go for Friday's second-half opener at Texas. The veteran didn't hit for a high average during the first half (.225) but his power numbers (22 homers and 65 RBI) are about where they usually are this time of year.
Jul 19 - 10:46 PM

Yankees activated C Gary Sanchez from the 10-day disabled list.

To clear a roster spot for him, the Yankees optioned Kyle Higashioka to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Sanchez is back after missing about a month with a strained groin. The 25-year-old managed just two hits in 12 at-bats during his rehab stint with Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, though both were home runs. He should be back behind the plate for Friday's second-half opener against the Mets.
Jul 19 - 9:08 PM

According to TR Sullivan of MLB.com, Keone Kela and Jake Diekman are both drawing trade interest.

Many contenders will be looking to bolster their bullpens ahead of the July 31 trade deadline and Kela and Diekman both have the goods to be difference-makers down the stretch. Kela has been especially impressive, converting all 23 of his save chances this year while delivering an electric 10.91 K/9. With Texas heading toward a rebuild, there's a good chance the Rangers will be sellers at the deadline.
Jul 19 - 8:57 PM

Shelby Miller's MRI showed no further damage to his injured elbow.

Despite this, Miller be shut down for at least another week. The right-hander has struggled mightily since coming back from Tommy John surgery (0-4, 11.40 ERA) and landed on the DL with renewed elbow inflammation prior to the All-Star break. Fantasy owners shouldn't be counting on him for any significant contributions down the stretch.
Jul 19 - 8:32 PM

Shohei Ohtani (elbow) has been cleared to begin a "throwing progression."

Ohtani was evaluated by Dr. Steve Yoon, who gave him the go-ahead to resume throwing. This comes six weeks after Ohtani received a platelet rich plasma injection to combat a UCL sprain in his right elbow. Ohtani appears to be ahead of schedule as it took teammate Garrett Richards 13 weeks to resume throwing following a similar procedure in 2016. It remains to be seen whether the 24-year-old will be able to pitch again this season, but he seems to finally be trending in the right direction. In the meantime, Ohtani will continue to see at-bats as the Angels' DH.
Jul 19 - 6:52 PM

Cubs pitching coach Jim Hickey said Yu Darvish (elbow, triceps) is still "weeks away" from returning.

Darvish was expected to resume mound work soon, but no mention was made of that on Thursday ahead of Chicago's first-half opener against St. Louis. The right-hander has seen numerous starts and stops throughout his rehab. He hasn't thrown a pitch in a big league setting since May 20. With Darvish still ailing, perhaps the Cubs will look to add an arm at the upcoming trade deadline.
Jul 19 - 6:46 PM

Evan Longoria (hand) will begin a minor league rehab assignment with Triple-A Sacramento on Friday.

It will be Longoria's first game action since going down with a broken hand on June 14. He'll surely need a few games to shake off the rust, but it shouldn't be long until the 32-year-old returns to the big leagues. Veteran Pablo Sandoval has been filling in for him at the hot corner.
Jul 19 - 5:52 PM

Cubs placed RHP Brandon Morrow on the 10-day disabled list with right biceps inflammation.

The move was made retroactive to July 16. Morrow's spot on the roster will be absorbed by Anthony Bass, who is back after missing the past two weeks with an illness. This is already Morrow's second trip to the DL this season after injuring his lower back while putting on his pants (seriously) last month. Steve Cishek, Carl Edwards Jr. and Pedro Strop will be candidates to handle the ninth inning in Morrow's absence.
Jul 19 - 4:41 PM

Jose Martinez is absent from the Cardinals' lineup Thursday.

Martinez has been on the pine for both of interim manager Mike Shildt's lineups (and has been benched in three straight games overall), as Shildt has gone with the better defensive combo of Mike Carpenter at first base and Jedd Gyorko at third. It's certainly a concern for Martinez's fantasy owners. As good as Martinez has been offensively this season, he's not looking like a reliable mixed league play right now unless Shildt reverses course (or the Cards trade him).
Jul 19 - 3:15 PM




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