MLB Rumors

Padres' Middlebrooks, Solarte competing, getting along at third base
by Brandon Wise |

Padres thirdbasemen Will Middlebrooks and Yangervis Solarte are both battling to get the starting nod at third base during spring training, but the two are getting along just fine so far, reports

"I'm trying to help him, he's trying to help me," Middlebrooks said. "We're working together, we're having fun and we're competing. It's for the team, and I think it'll be good if we both push each other."

Middlebrooks hit .191 with two home runs and 19 RBI in 215 plate appearances for the Red Sox in 2014.

He is also okay if he ends up playing a different position down the line.

"Third base is the priority," he said, "but wherever I can get in the lineup, wherever I can help us win some baseball games, that's what's important for me."

Meanwhile, Solarte is doing what he can to help Middlebrooks adjust to his new surroundings.

"That's competing," Solarte said. "For me, it's my teammate. I want to work hard with him and make it fun, too."

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Nationals pitcher Rich Hill will compete for bullpen spot
by Brandon Wise |

Nationals pitcher Rich Hill is expected to compete for a bullpen spot with the team during spring training after being signed to a minor-league contract Friday.

"Veteran, been there, got big league experience," Williams said. "We'll get him in camp, get a good look at him, and let him compete."

Hill posted a 1.69 ERA in 14 appearances with the Yankees in 2014.

"He's ready to go compete," Williams said. "He's here to vie for a spot."

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Dodgers pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu back on the mound Monday
by Brandon Wise |

Dodgers pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu is set to get back on the mound Monday to throw, manager Don Mattingly said Saturday.

Ryu is dealing with a back injury, but has been throwing the last couple of days without pain. He went 14-7 in 2014 with a 3.38 ERA and 139 strikeouts in 152 innings pitched.

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Dodgers' Clayton Kershaw to make spring training debut Thursday
by Brandon Wise |

Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw will make his spring training debut Thursday against the White Sox, manager Don Mattingly said Saturday.

Kershaw went 21-3 with a 1.77 ERA in 2014 with 239 strikeouts in 198 1/3 innings pitched, leading the National League MVP and Cy Young awards.

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Athletics' Coco Crisp dealing with short term case of pink eye
by Brandon Wise |

Athletics outfielder Coco Crisp is dealing with a short term case of pink eye and could miss a few more days of spring training, reports the San Jose Mercury News.

"We're hoping we've caught it early," manager Bob Melvin said. "He came in with it yesterday and we've got him at home now hoping this resolves itself quickly."

Crisp dealt with a similar problem at the end of the 2012 season, but isn't expected to miss as much time as he did then. 

"We're hoping very much that it's not going to take him that long this time," Melvin said. "But if it had to happen, this is a good time, with so much of the spring left."

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Dodgers' Joel Peralta to throw bullpen session Monday
by Brandon Wise |

Dodgers pitcher Joel Peralta is scheduled to throw a bullpen session Monday while dealing with a shoulder injury, reports the Orange County Register. Peralta, who is fighting off shoulder stiffness, could still open the season on the disabled-list.

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White Sox's Chris Sale out three weeks with fracture in right foot
by Brandon Wise |

White Sox pitcher Chris Sale is expected to miss at least three weeks with an avulsion fracture in his right foot, the team announced Saturday. Sale, who suffered the injury in an accident at his home, underwent X-rays and will undergo further testing once the swelling goes down.

He reportedly suffered the injury while unloading a item from his truck, according to general manager Rick Hahn. Sale is confident he can be ready by opening day, even though his status has yet to be determined.

He went 12-4 with a 2.17 ERA in 174 innings pitched with 208 strikeouts in 2014.

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Astros' Luis Cruz misses practice Saturday with swelling in hand
by Brandon Wise |

Astros pitcher Luis Cruz is still dealing with swelling in his pitching hand a day after jamming it while fielding ground balls Friday, reports the Houston Chronicle.

"It feels better, but it's still swollen a lot," Cruz said. "Hopefully I can play catch tomorrow."

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Jason Lane to start spring training opener for Padres Wednesday
by Brandon Wise |

Pitcher Jason Lane will be the Padres spring training starter when the team opens Cactus League play Wednesday, manager Bud Black said Saturday.

Lane pitched 10 1/3 innings in 2014 with six strikeouts.

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Giants' Angel Pagan returns to field with live batting practice Saturday
by Brandon Wise |

Giants outfielder Angel Pagan is taking live batting practice Saturday after he was expected to remain off the field, reports the San Francisco Chronicle.

Pagan, who has been dealing with a neck injury, told reporters his neck is feeling fine. Last season, Pagan hit .300 with three home runs, 27 RBI and 16 stolen bases in 383 at-bats.

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