Friday, April 18th, 2014
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Middlebrooks to begin rehab next week 04-18-2014
Will Middlebrooks 3B BOS
Will Middlebrooks (calf) will begin a rehab assignment in the middle of next week.

Brian MacPherson on Twitter
He had been in line to begin one over the weekend, but he's been set back a few days due to the flu. Barring any more setbacks, Middlebrooks should still be ready for activation before the end of the month.
Michael Cuddyer (hamstring) not in lineup 04-18-2014
Michael Cuddyer RF COL
Michael Cuddyer (hamstring) is not in the Rockies' lineup Friday.

MLB Lineups on Twitter
Cuddyer expected to miss at least one game after leaving Thursday's contest with a left hamstring cramp. He should be back in there over the weekend. Charlie Blackmon is in right field Friday, with Drew Stubbs in center.
David Ortiz not in lineup on Friday 04-18-2014
David Ortiz DH BOS
David Ortiz is not in the Red Sox' lineup Friday.

MLB Lineups on Twitter
It's just a routine day of rest. Mike Napoli is in the DH spot Friday, with Mike Carp handling first base.
Nick Martinez to start on Tuesday 04-18-2014
Nick Martinez P TEX
Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said Friday that Nick Martinez is likely to be recalled to start on Tuesday in place of the injured Tanner Scheppers (elbow).

Jeff Wilson on Twitter
Martinez held his own in his major league debut earlier this month, allowing three runs over six frames against the Rays. He could be needed for more than one start, depending on when the Rangers bring Matt Harrison (back) back from the DL.
Andy Parrino designated for assignment 04-18-2014
Andy Parrino 2B TEX
Rangers designated INF Andy Parrino for assignment. The move was made in order to clear room on the 40-man roster for Aaron Poreda. Parrino will have the option of becoming a free agent if he clears waivers.
Aaron Poreda called up from Triple-A 04-18-2014
Aaron Poreda P TEX
Rangers purchased the contract of LHP Aaron Poreda from Triple-A Round Rock. It's been an interesting journey for Poreda. The former first-round pick hasn't appeared in the majors since 2009 and has been limited to 20 minor league innings over the last two-plus seasons due to Tommy John surgery. He's reportedly throwing hard again, but control has always been his issue.
Tanner Scheppers (elbow) placed on DL 04-18-2014
Tanner Scheppers P TEX
Rangers placed RHP Tanner Scheppers on the 15-day disabled list with muscle inflammation in his right elbow. The club is saying Scheppers' ligament is fine, as it's a muscular injury. That's obviously preferred, but it's not clear how long he might be sidelined. Nick Martinez is expected to be recalled to start on Tuesday in Scheppers' place.
Jonathan Lucroy getting a day off 04-18-2014
Jonathan Lucroy C MLW
Jonathan Lucroy is not in the Brewers' lineup Friday.

Bill Brink on Twitter
Martin Maldonado has caught Kyle Lohse's last few starts and will do so again Friday. Lucroy should be back in there Saturday.
Wilson Ramos (hand) takes five swings 04-18-2014
Wilson Ramos C WAS
Wilson Ramos (hand) took five light swings Friday.

Mark Zuckerman on Twitter
It's the first time he's swung a bat since hamate bone surgery on April 2. Although Ramos said he didn't feel any pain, his left wrist remains weak (which is no surprise). He's expected back with the Nationals in mid-May.
Carlos Beltran not in lineup Friday 04-18-2014
Carlos Beltran RF NYY
Carlos Beltran is not in the Yankees' lineup Friday.

Jorge Castillo on Twitter
Beltran is dealing with a sore left shoulder and right wrist after flipping over a short fence in foul territory during Thursday's game. He should be fine to play on Saturday. Ichiro Suzuki is taking his place in right field Friday.
Iwakuma to begin rehab assignment Tuesday 04-18-2014
Hisashi Iwakuma P SEA
Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon said Friday that Hisashi Iwakuma (finger) will "probably" begin a rehab assignment on Tuesday at Triple-A Tacoma.

Bob Dutton on Twitter
Iwakuma had a successful simulated game Friday and will throw one more bullpen session Sunday before beginning a rehab assignment. It's not clear at this point how many rehab starts the right-hander will need, but his early May timetable still appears to be a realistic goal.
Jason Heyward sitting out on Friday 04-18-2014
Jason Heyward RF ATL
Jason Heyward is not in the Braves' lineup Friday.

David O'Brien on Twitter
Heyward is in a terrible funk at the plate with just two hits in his last 34 at-bats. He's being replaced in right field by Ryan Doumit and in the leadoff spot by Andrelton Simmons.
Brandon Phillips diagnosed with back spasms 04-18-2014
Brandon Phillips 2B CIN
Brandon Phillips was removed from Friday's game against the Cubs due to back spasms.

John Fay on Twitter
Phillips was injured on a swing in the first inning and eventually was taken out in the third. The Reds are saying his removal was precautionary. Consider Phillips day-to-day for the time being, but he figures to miss at least a game or two.
Brandon Maurer will start on Sunday 04-18-2014
Brandon Maurer P SEA
Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon confirmed Friday that Brandon Maurer will be recalled to start on Sunday in Miami.

Bob Dutton on Twitter
Maurer began the season in Triple-A Tacoma's bullpen but was moved into the rotation last week and boasts a 2.16 ERA with a whopping 17 strikeouts over his first 8 1/3 innings. He only went two innings in his lone start for Tacoma, so his pitch count will obviously be limited Sunday.
Jason Giambi (rib) will be activated Monday 04-18-2014
Jason Giambi DH CLE
Jason Giambi (rib) won't be activated from the disabled list until Monday.

Jordan Bastian on Twitter
He was originally supposed to be activated Friday, but the Indians have decided to give him a few more rehab at-bats while also allowing them to delay a roster decision. Giambi has been out with a broken rib.
Brock Holt recalled from Triple-A 04-18-2014
Brock Holt 3B BOS
Red Sox recalled INF Brock Holt from Triple-A Pawtucket. He's taking Ryan Roberts' spot on the roster. Holt was up briefly earlier this month but didn't see any action.
Ryan Roberts designated for assignment 04-18-2014
Ryan Roberts 2B BOS
Red Sox designated INF Ryan Roberts for assignment. That didn't take long. Roberts was brought in on a one-year deal a week and a half ago but has been given the boot after picked up just two singles in 19 at-bats. Jonathan Herrera and Brock Holt will handle third base until Will Middlebrooks (calf) returns.
Josh Wall recalled from Triple-A 04-18-2014
Josh Wall P LAA
Angels recalled RHP Josh Wall from Triple-A Salt Lake. He's replacing Jose Alvarez in the bullpen. Wall held a 2.16 ERA with seven strikeouts over 8 1/3 relief frames at Triple-A before the promotion. He'll work in middle relief.
Jose Alvarez optioned to Triple-A 04-18-2014
Jose Alvarez P LAA
Angels optioned LHP Jose Alvarez to Triple-A Salt Lake. Alvarez was up for less than a week and was unscored upon in two-thirds of an inning. He's being replaced in the bullpen by Josh Wall.
Nick Castellanos not in lineup Friday 04-18-2014
Nick Castellanos 3B DET
Nick Castellanos is not in the Tigers' lineup Friday.

MLB Lineups on Twitter
It appears to just be a day of rest, as Castellanos is in a 2-for-16 slide at the dish. Don Kelly is handling third base in his place.
Matt Adams getting day off Friday 04-18-2014
Matt Adams 1B STL
Matt Adams is not in the Cardinals' lineup Friday.

FOX Sports Midwest on Twitter
He's getting a breather against tough lefty Gio Gonzalez. Allen Craig is playing first base, with Shane Robinson handling right field. Kolten Wong is also sitting out, as Mark Ellis is at second base.
Tyler Collins optioned to Triple-A 04-18-2014
Tyler Collins LF DET
Tigers optioned OF Tyler Collins to Triple-A Toledo. The Tigers have called up Justin Miller in his place, as they'll go with 13 pitchers for now. Collins had two hits in just 14 at-bats while up with the big club.
Piscotty hits first Triple-A home run 04-18-2014
Stephen Piscotty RF STL
Cardinals prospect OF Stephen Piscotty hit his first home run of the season Thursday for Triple-A Memphis. The 23-year-old is off to a great start this year, batting .327/.377/.449 with four extra-base hits and nine RBI through his first 13 games for Memphis. Piscotty opened eyes during spring training and made a strong impression on the Cardinals' coaching staff. He's still behind Oscar Taveras on the team's outfield depth chart, but Piscotty's overall consistency and knack for hitting left-handed pitching could have him in the majors this season before his highly touted Memphis teammate.
Phillips exits game with possible back injury 04-18-2014
Brandon Phillips 2B CIN
Brandon Phillips left Friday's game against the Cubs with a possible back injury.

John Fay on Twitter
Phillips appeared to tweak his lower back on a swing in the first inning. He initially stayed in and even singled on the next pitch he saw, but Ramon Santiago took over for him at second base in the third inning. The Reds should update Phillips' status later Friday.
Xavier Cedeno recalled from Triple-A 04-18-2014
Xavier Cedeno P WAS
Nationals recalled LHP Xavier Cedeno from Triple-A Syracuse. He'll give the Nats a fresh arm after the bullpen was overused Thursday. Cedeno allowed one run over six relief innings for Washington last season.
Blake Treinen optioned to Triple-A 04-18-2014
Blake Treinen P WAS
Nationals optioned RHP Blake Treinen to Triple-A Syracuse. He threw 60 pitches over 2 2/3 relief innings Thursday, so the Nationals are bringing in a fresh bullpen arm. Treinen has an interesting arm but still needs to work on his command.
Iwakuma on pace for rehab start on Wed. 04-18-2014
Hisashi Iwakuma P SEA
Hisashi Iwakuma (finger) is on pace to begin a rehab assignment at Triple-A Tacoma on April 23.

Bob Dutton on Twitter
Iwakuma had a successful simulated game Friday and is scheduled for one more bullpen session Sunday before being cleared for game action. It's not clear at this point how many rehab starts the right-hander will need, but he remains on pact for an early May return.
Frazier makes season debut 04-18-2014
Clint Frazier CF CLE
Indians prospect OF Clint Frazier made his season debut Thursday for Low-A Lake County. The 19-year-old was 1-for-5 in the game with an RBI. Frazier, the No. 5 overall pick in the 2013 draft, was assigned to Lake County after spending his professional debut last summer in the Rookie-level Arizona League, where he batted .297/.362/.506 with 11 doubles, five triples, five home runs and 28 RBI in 44 games. Frazier possesses some of the best pure bat speed in the minor leagues and has the potential to be an All-Star-caliber player in his prime. However, his approach and pitch recognition is understandably raw given his age and lack of experience, and will likely require a few years to refine in the minor leagues.
Franklin Gutierrez plans to play in 2015 04-18-2014
Franklin Gutierrez CF SEA
Franklin Gutierrez on Friday reiterated his desire to return to playing next season.

Shannon Drayer on Twitter
Gutierrez decided in February to take all of the 2014 season off as he focuses on his health. The outfielder averaged just 58 games played per season from 2011-13 due to a variety of health issues and over the winter was diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis. He'll turn 32 next February and will surely have to settle for a minor league deal next offseason.
'Several' MLB club interested in Manny 04-18-2014
Manny Ramirez LF OAK
Zach Links of MLBTradeRumors.com reports that Manny Ramirez is receiving interest from "several" major league teams.

Zach Links on Twitter
There have been reports that he could catch on with an independent league team, but Links says Manny is only considering a minor league deal or signing with a Japanese club. Slated to turn 42 next month, Ramirez spent last year in China and briefly at Triple-A with the Rangers before being released.
Joel Hanrahan not negotiating yet 04-18-2014
Joel Hanrahan P BOS
FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal reports that Joel Hanrahan (elbow) has not yet begun negotiating with any teams.

Ken Rosenthal on Twitter
He's expected to begin fielding offers sometime next week. Some clubs, Rosenthal notes, have requested Hanrahan's medicals. The veteran reliever reportedly looked good during a showcase on Thursday in front of nearly 20 clubs, topping out at 93 mph. Hanrahan should pick a team before the end of the month but will need more time before he's big league-ready.
Freddy Garcia set to sign with Asian club 04-18-2014
Freddy Garcia P ATL
Chris Cotillo of MLBDailyDish.com reports that Freddy Garcia is close to signing with an undisclosed team in Asia.

MLBDailyDish.com
Garcia opted out of his minor league deal with the Braves after finding out he wasn't going to make the Opening Day roster. He was hoping to find a major league deal somewhere but had only been offered minor league deals to this point. Obviously he's apparently found a better opportunity overseas.
Aroldis Chapman (head) cleared for live BP 04-18-2014
Aroldis Chapman P CIN
Aroldis Chapman (head) has been cleared to throw live batting practice.

John Fay on Twitter
Reds manager Bryan Price said Wednesday that Chapman could be cleared before the end of the team's road trip, and it turns out he's been cleared on the first day of their 10-day trip. It seems like the reliever might be a tad ahead of schedule, but the Reds haven't said as much, only offering that Chapman is coming along well. A mid-May return has been expected.
Brian Omogrosso signs with indy league club 04-18-2014
Brian Omogrosso P CWS
Chris Cotillo of MLBDailyDish.com reports that Brian Omogrosso has signed with the Bridgeport Bluefish of the independent Atlantic League.

Chris Cotillo on Twitter
Omogrosso, who will turn 30 next week, posted a 5.54 ERA across 29 appearances over the last two seasons with the White Sox. He'll be looking to impress enough in indy ball to attract interest from major league clubs.
Jon Jay seeing more starts in center field 04-18-2014
Jon Jay CF STL
Jon Jay has started three of the last four games in center field for the Cardinals.

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Manager Mike Matheny is simply playing the hot hand, as Jay has four hits -- including a three-run homer -- in 12 at-bats over that stretch. "Jon has done a nice job, and I think that is something that all these guys need to know from us," Matheny said. "It is, `What do I need to get an opportunity to play?' Jon had four quality at-bats (Wednesday). It's a good day for him to keep that swing going." With the Nationals starting lefty Gio Gonzalez Friday, Peter Bourjos should be back manning center field.
Brandon Maurer likely to start Sunday 04-18-2014
Brandon Maurer P SEA
Brandon Maurer is the most likely candidate to start for the Mariners on Sunday in Miami.

Tacoma News Tribune
Taijuan Walker (shoulder) had a setback and Blake Beavan (shoulder) joined him on the disabled list, so the M's are looking for another starter. Maurer began the season in Triple-A Tacoma's bullpen but was moved into the rotation last week and boasts a 2.16 ERA with a whopping 17 strikeouts over his first 8 1/3 innings. He only went two innings in his lone start for Tacoma, so his pitch count would obviously be limited Sunday.
Teixeira feels good in extended spring game 04-18-2014
Mark Teixeira 1B NYY
Mark Teixeira (hamstring) said he "couldn't be happier" with how he felt during an extended spring training game Friday.

Erik Boland on Twitter
Teixeira went just 1-for-5 in the game, but the most important thing is that he's feeling healthy. The first baseman remains on track to be activated from the disabled list on Sunday, the first day he's eligible.
Joe Nathan thinks he's over 'dead arm' 04-18-2014
Joe Nathan P DET
Joe Nathan said his arm felt "a lot livelier" while recording a save during a perfect inning Thursday.

Tigers.mlb.com
Nathan admitted last week that he was going through a "dead arm" phase, but it sounds like it could be behind him. "Today was more how I felt, being able to finish," Nathan said Thursday. "My velocity is what it's going to be, but moreso I was locating where I wanted to. But it did feel like it was a lot livelier. There's different 91s, different 92s, but today, at least finishing pitches, it felt like it was jumping out of my hand better."
Carlos Santana playing through groin injury 04-18-2014
Carlos Santana 3B CLE
Carlos Santana is nursing a sore left groin.

Cleveland Plain Dealer
Santana revealed after Wednesday's game that he had the injury as he sat in his locker with his left thigh wrapped. He played third base on Thursday, though he went 0-for-4 with three strikeouts. In a 1-for-27 funk at the plate and now dealing with an injury, it's probably a good time for Santana to get a day or two off.
Hamels terrific in likely final rehab start 04-18-2014
Cole Hamels P PHI
Cole Hamels (biceps) tossed seven innings of one-run ball Thursday for High-A Clearwater in what is expected to be his final rehab start.

Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News
Hamels gave up just three hits, walked one and struck out two. The left-hander has posted a 2.12 ERA and 12/1 K/BB ratio over his 17 rehab innings to this point, clearing the way for him to rejoin the Phillies' rotation early next week. Assuming the club keeps Hamels on schedule, he'll make his season debut on Tuesday versus the Dodgers.
Beltran could sit out Friday after fall 04-18-2014
Carlos Beltran RF NYY
Carlos Beltran could sit out on Friday after flipping over a short fence in foul territory during Thursday's game.

Newark Star-Ledger
Beltran was in a dead sprint after a ball and tumbled over a fence at Tropicana Field. He popped right back up and finished the game in spite of a sore left shoulder and right wrist. Beltran should be fine over the long haul, but it wouldn't be a surprise if Yankees manager Joe Girardi gives the soon-to-be 37-year-old a breather Friday.
Three teams interested in Jeremy Jeffress 04-18-2014
Jeremy Jeffress P TOR
Scott MacArthur of TSN Radio Network reports that at least three teams, including the Cardinals, Brewers and White Sox, have shown interest in Jeremy Jeffress.

Scott MacArthur on Twitter
Jeffress elected free agency after being designated for assignment by the Blue Jays earlier this month. While he has a career 4.47 ERA over 52 1/3 frames at the big league level, Jeffress has struck out 50, has a fastball that touches the upper 90s and won't turn 27 until September. It's no surprise that there are some clubs apparently willing to take a shot on him.
Ryan Brasier moved to 60-day DL 04-18-2014
Ryan Brasier P LAA
Angels transferred RHP Ryan Brasier from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day disabled list. The move cleared room on the 40-man roster for the addition of Brennan Boesch. Brasier is out indefinitely with a right elbow strain.
Shane Greene optioned to Triple-A 04-18-2014
Shane Greene P NYY
Yankees optioned RHP Shane Greene to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Greene was the 26th man for Wednesday's doubleheader but didn't make an appearance. It's the second time he was up this month but didn't see any action. He figures to get another chance at some point.
Zach Rosscup optioned to Triple-A 04-18-2014
Zac Rosscup P CHC
Cubs optioned LHP Zach Rosscup to Triple-A Iowa. Rosscup was the 26th man for Wednesday's doubleheader and tossed 1 2/3 perfect innings in an appearance. He should get another shot later this summer.
Alex Sanabia outrighted to Triple-A 04-18-2014
Alex Sanabia P ARZ
Diamondbacks sent RHP Alex Sanabia outright to Triple-A Reno. He's now off the 40-man roster. Sanabia, 25, has posted a 9.49 ERA in his first three starts at Reno.
04-18-2014
Koji Uehara P BOS
Koji Uehara returned to action on Thursday April 17.
04-18-2014
Chase Headley 3B SD
Chase Headley returned to action on Thursday April 17.
04-18-2014
Brandon Crawford SS SF
Brandon Crawford returned to action on Thursday April 17.
Jon Lester strikes out nine in victory 04-18-2014
Jon Lester P BOS
Jon Lester tossed eight strong outings, allowing just one run and striking out nine, in defeating the White Sox on Thursday. Lester cost himself in the sixth, when he was too slow to get over to first base on Adam Eaton's run-scoring infield single, and again in the seventh, when he failed to handle a pretty easy comebacker. But fielding issues aside -- and his awkward throws to first likely will lose him a game at some point -- he's been outstanding on the mound. He's currently sporting a 29/4 K/BB ratio in 29 innings and a 2.03 ERA. Next up for him is his second start of the month against the Yankees.
Koji Uehara returns to mound, earns save 04-18-2014
Koji Uehara P BOS
Koji Uehara earned a save with a scoreless ninth in his return to the mound Thursday against the White Sox. Uehara showed his usual velocity in his return from a sore shoulder, but he did give up a single and miss up with a couple of splitters to a dangerous hitter in Jose Abreu with two outs. Fortunately, Abreu didn't take a cut at either of those before grounding out on a better offering. In all, Uehara threw 13 pitches. The Red Sox will likely be especially careful with him for the next few weeks, so if they have another save situation on Friday, we imagine it will go to Edward Mujica.
Chris Sale strikes out 10 in no-decision 04-18-2014
Chris Sale P CWS
Chris Sale wasn't involved in the decision after allowing one run in seven innings and striking out 10 against the Red Sox on Thursday. Sale was dominant for the most part, with the Red Sox crushing two of his very few mistakes. Fortunately, the first didn't hurt him, as Adam Eaton robbed David Ortiz of a homer in the first. The other did, though, as Xander Bogaerts was able to hit one out to left in the sixth. It was the first homer allowed by Sale in four starts this season.
Xander Bogaerts hits first homer 04-18-2014
Xander Bogaerts SS BOS
Xander Bogaerts hit his first homer of the year to give the Red Sox their lone run in seven innings against Chris Sale on Thursday. Bogaerts doesn't yet have consistent major league power at age 21, but he does show glimpses and it's only a matter of time until he's a 20- or 25-homer guy. For this year, expect more modest numbers. That he's worth owning in mixed leagues anyway owes much to Fenway and the surrounding members of Boston's lineup (even if the group is off to a slow start).