Yadiel Rivera recently underwent surgery to repair a torn ligament in his right elbow.
Rivera played in just four games for the Rangers in 2020. The procedure included inserting an internal brace in the elbow, a move that helps cut down the recovery time to 5-6 months. With that timetable he could be ready for the regular season in 2021, though any setbacks would put that timeline in jeopardy. Even if he is ready, the 28-year-old will have to earn any role he holds with the Rangers or anyone else next season.
Jake Odorizzi (blister) has been throwing in recent days and told Twins manager Rocco Baldelli he should be good to go for the postseason.
The Twins don't have a ton to play for before October, so with just a few days left in the regular season there's no reason for Odorizzi to rush back. "With Jake’s chance to give us some innings in the playoffs, we don’t want to use him too much," Baldelli said. "We want to let him heal up." The right-hander went on the injured list on September 18 with a blister on his right hand. Injuries virtually wiped out his 2020 regular season, limiting him to just four starts in which he posted a ghastly 6.59 ERA.
Luis Arraez (ankle) took swings in an indoor cage and was expected to run on the field Friday.
Arraez sprained his left ankle Monday at the Twins' alternate training site, and he's working toward a return in hopes of being ready for the team's Wild Card Series matchup. "I think he’s doing better," Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said. Whether or not he gets well enough to participate in the postseason, the next time we'll see him for fantasy purposes will be 2021. After an impressive debut in 2019, the 23-year-old was much more pedestrian in his 104 at-bats this year, hitting .288/.336/.337 without a home run or stolen base in 30 games.
Kevin Pillar went 3-for-4 with two doubles and three RBI in the second game of Friday's doubleheader in Arizona.
Pillar is batting .322/.359/.471 in 23 games since joining the Rockies, so it's pretty much a given that the team will overpay to keep him as a free agent this winter. It's not the worst possible idea, given the team's struggles to keep two decent outfielders on the field alongside Charlie Blackmon. Pillar has lost a step in center and has big-time OBP issues, but he is competent.
Pavin Smith hit his first major league homer Friday off the Rockies' A.J. Ramos.
Smith is hitting .294 in 34 at-bats since being called up for the first time in Sept. 10. He lacks the power one wants to see from a first baseman, but he'll probably get somewhat better there and plate discipline is a strength. He'll have a much better chance of fitting into Arizona's plans for next year if the DH sticks around; Christian Walker probably isn't going anywhere, but the Diamondbacks do seem to like him better as a DH than as a first baseman.
Antonio Santos got just two outs and gave up six runs Friday in his start against the Diamondbacks.
Santos, who was supposed to spend most of this season in Double-A, was making his third major league appearance after pitching in relief twice previously. He's given up 11 runs and 14 hits in six innings between the three outings.
Taylor Clarke surrendered four runs in five innings Friday, but he still earned a win over the Rockies in the second game of a doubleheader.
The win moved Clarke to 3-0 with a 4.36 ERA in five starts and seven relief appearances. Arizona's preference will likely to bring in one starter this winter, which would allow Clarke and Alex Young to battle for the fifth spot, perhaps with some competition from prospect Corbin Martin. Clarke would probably have the initial edge in that battle.
Tim Locastro went 3-for-3 with two RBI, a walk and a HBP Friday as the Diamondbacks topped the Rockies 11-5 in the second game of a doubleheader.
The HBP was actually just the fourth for Locastro in 77 plate appearances this year. Last year, he had 22 in 250 plate appearances. Locastro has been a surprisingly productive hitter this year, coming in at .281/.395/.453. There's little chance that he would have maintained that line in an expanded role, but the Diamondbacks still almost surely would have been better off giving him more playing time early in the season; he had just 29 plate appearances through the end of August.
Clayton Kershaw was charged with four runs -- one earned -- in four innings Friday against the Angels.
Kershaw gave up a season-high eight hits, two of them homers. He had a similarly poor performance early last month against the Giants and rebounded with four straight stellar outings. The Dodgers have to hope something similar happens this time. He'll take a 6-2 record and a 2.15 ERA into the postseason.
Justin Turner hit a pair of solo homers Friday as the Dodgers topped the Angels 9-5.
Although he's still limited by a hamstring injury, Turner is 12-for-28 in eight games since coming off the injured list, raising his OPS from .795 to .871. Because of the injury, he's been lifted early from each of his last four appearances.
Ryan McMahon went 2-for-3 with a homer in the second game of Friday's doubleheader against the Diamondbacks.
McMahon has gotten all of the playing time he could have hoped for this year, but he's batting just .202/.303/.414 with 63 strikeouts in 185 plate appearances. He shouldn't be handed a starting job again next year, though with first base and second base still open and maybe even third base becoming a question mark should Nolan Arenado want out, it seems likely that he will be.
Mike Trout hit a three-run homer before his Angels were officially eliminated from postseason contention Friday.
Despite 17 homers and 46 RBI in 53 games, Trout will be headed home at the end of the regular season for the sixth straight year. This could also be the first year of his career that he hasn't led the AL in a major category, though he's still in the running with his .602 slugging percentage (Jose Abreu leads at .625) and he's in the top five in homers, RBI, runs and OBP. It's a good bet that he'd have ended up topping the circuit in a category or two in a 162-game season.
Jared Walsh went 2-for-5 with a homer Friday versus the Dodgers.
Walsh lost a 14-game hitting streak snapped in his previous game Wednesday, but he didn't let that get him down. He has nine homers, all of them coming in 18 games since Sept. 4. He has 24 RBI and 15 runs scored during that span.
Will Smith went 2-for-4 with a homer and a walk as the Dodgers' designated hitter on Friday.
Smith will do most of the catching for the Dodgers in the postseason, but with no off days initially in the schedule, he could DH on occasion, putting Austin Barnes' superior glove behind the plate. Smith is batting .290 with seven homers and nine doubles in 128 plate appearances this year. His 19/19 K/BB ratio is especially impressive for a catcher in his second year. Last year, he came in at 52/18 in 196 PA.
Andrew Heaney gave up five runs in four innings Friday in a no-decision versus the Dodgers.
Heaney ends the year 4-3 with a 4.46 ERA. He didn't have as difficult of a schedule as most West pitchers this year, as he faced the Rangers three times and the Mariners three times in his 12 starts. Still, he was pretty average anyway, in part because he was the one guy who couldn't seem to get a handle on the Texas "offense" this year (11 ER in 15 1/3 IP). He really should be better than this while healthy.
Trent Grisham delivered a three-run homer off Sam Coonrod in the bottom of the seventh to give the Padres a 6-5 win over the Giants in the second game of Friday's doubleheader.
No one would have minded if Grisham took some time coming out of the box after this one, though since there was some doubt over whether it would get out, he didn't get to admire it. Grisham also had an RBI single earlier in the contest. The homer was his 10th of the year, but just his second in in 21 games this month.
Alex Bregman launched a solo homer and drove in two runs in Friday’s loss to the Rangers.
He took John King deep in the sixth inning and later drove in the go-ahead run with a sac fly in the 10th inning, though the Rangers staged a comeback in the bottom of the frame for the win. After going without a homer over his last 21 games, Bregman has now homered on back-to-back days. He appears to be heating up at just the right time for the Astros.
Ryan Pressly blew a save Friday against the Rangers.
Asked to hold a one-run lead, Pressly retired the first two batters he faced before Ronald Guzman connected for a game-tying homer. He would escape the inning without any further damage, but the Rangers would go on to win in extra innings. Pressly had secured each of his previous six save opportunities.
Kyle Cody spun five innings of one-run ball in a no-decision against the Astros on Friday.
Cody allowed three hits and walked three, with an RBI triple from George Springer coming in his final frame. He struck out just one of the 20 batters he faced, but pitching to contact worked for him here. The 26-year-old has been a nice surprise in a small sample for the Rangers this year, posting a 1.59 ERA, but his shaky control indicates this isn’t meant to last.
Jose Urquidy yielded two runs over seven innings in a no-decision against the Rangers on Friday.
He was in position for the win until Ryan Pressly blew the save in the ninth. Urquidy allowed seven hits and no walks, with the only offense coming on a pair of solo homers from Sam Huff. It was a long wait for Urquidy to join the Astros, but it has been worth it so far, as he’s sporting a 2.73 ERA and 17/8 K/BB ratio in 29 2/3 innings over five starts.
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