Players News

Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo said Wednesday that Lourdes Gurriel may see action at first base this season.
Feb 19   10:33 AM

Travis Shaw projects as the Blue Jays' primary first baseman, but he will take some days off against tough left-handed pitchers, which is when Gurriel could slide in. Gurriel, who projects as the Jays' primary left fielder, posted an impressive .869 OPS with 20 home runs, 50 RBI, six stolen bases, and 52 runs scored in just 84 games last season with Toronto. He also carries eligibility at second base on Yahoo.

DJ LeMahieu told reporters Wednesday that he has had no talks with the Yankees yet about a contract extension.
Feb 19   9:12 AM

LeMahieu added that he loves playing in New York, and it showed last season. After averaging just seven home runs and 49 RBI per year between 2013-2018, the 31-year-old infielder exploded for 26 homers and 102 RBI in 145 games with the Yankees in 2019. That also came with with a career-best .893 OPS and 109 runs scored. LeMahieu is entering the second year of a two-year, $24 million deal.

Martin Gallegos of MLB.com believes that Franklin Barreto has a great chance of making the Athletics' Opening Day roster out of spring training.
Feb 19   8:56 AM

In fact, Barreto has a real shot to win the starting second base job with a strong camp, per Gallegos. A former top prospect who was the biggest get in the trade that shipped Josh Donaldson to Toronto way back when, the soon-to-be 24-year-old has struggled at the highest level but has flashed brilliance at Triple-A. And the Athletics have a clear need at second. If it's not Barreto, it could be Jorge Mateo, Tony Kemp, Sheldon Neuse or Rule 5 pick Vimael Machin. This one could take all spring to sort out.

Giancarlo Stanton said Wednesday morning that he is "limitation-free" this spring at Yankees camp.
Feb 19   8:56 AM

Stanton appeared in only 18 regular-season games for the Yankees in 2019 due to a variety of injuries, including a left biceps strain, a left shoulder strain, a calf strain, and a PCL strain in his right knee. He also then suffered a Grade 2 quad strain during the ALCS. But the big slugger is aiming to turn the page leading into the 2020 campaign and he could be a good value in fantasy drafts if he manages to see 140-150 games in a powerful Yankees lineup. Stanton's current ADP on Yahoo is 51.9.

Martin Gallegos of MLB.com believes that Franklin Barreto has a great chance of making the Opening Day roster out of spring training.
Feb 18   10:51 PM

In fact, Barreto has a real shot to win the starting second base job with a strong camp, per Gallegos. A former top prospect who was the biggest get in the trade that shipped Josh Donaldson to Toronto way back when, the soon-to-be 24-year-old has struggled at the highest level but has flashed brilliance at Triple-A. And the Athletics have a clear need at second. If it's not Barreto, it could be Jorge Mateo, Tony Kemp, Sheldon Neuse or Rule 5 pick Vimael Machin. This one could take all spring to sort out.

Martin Gallegos of MLB.com believes that Franklin Barreto has his best chance of making the MLB roster out of spring training that he's had since joining the Athletics.
Feb 18   9:57 PM

In fact, Barreto has a real chance to win the starting second baseman job with a strong spring. A former top prospect that was the biggest get in the trade that shipped Josh Donaldson to Toronto, the soon-to-be 24-year-old has struggled at the highest level, but the Athletics have an obvious need at second, and Barreto has flashed brilliance at the Triple-A level. If it's not Barreto, it could be Jorge Mateo, Tony Kemp, Sheldon Neuse or Rule 5 pick Vimael Machin that takes home that starting gig. This one should take all spring to figure out.

Alex Reyes is currently working on a starter's schedule ahead of Grapefruit League action.
Feb 18   9:02 PM

Reyes is one of the most talented pitchers in baseball, but he's struggled to stay healthy, and the assumption was that he'd be working in a high-leverage role in the bullpen. That's still possible, but the 25-year-old is now going to get a chance to win a spot in the rotation, as there are two openings for St. Louis that are being competed for. Carlos Martinez and Kwang-Hyun Kim are considered the favorites for now, but if Reyes can pitch well in the Grapefruit League, there's at least a chance he opens the year as one of the starters.

Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman told reporters on Tuesday that Jimmy Nelson could be a "Brandon Morrow-type" reliever.
Feb 18   9:02 PM

Nelson is currently getting a chance to win one of the final spots in the rotation for the Dodgers, but there's a lot of competition for those spots, and the right-hander has not been healthy since 2017 when he suffered a shoulder injury diving back into first base. There's never been a question about his stuff, however, and if Nelson is moved into a mid-to-high leverage role, he could miss plenty of bats as a bridge to Kenley Jansen.

Astros pitching coach Brent Strom confirmed Tuesday that Brad Peacock (neck) has essentially been eliminated from the competition for the final spot in the team's rotation.
Feb 18   7:22 PM

Peacock experienced a recurrence of nerve damage symptoms in his neck shortly after arriving to Astros camp in Florida and is behind the other rotation candidates -- namely Josh James, Austin Pruitt, and Framber Valdez. The hope is that Peacock will be stretched out enough to fill a spot in the Astros' bullpen come Opening Day.

Indians signed RHP Zack Weiss to a minor league contract.
Feb 18   4:44 PM

He'll report to minor league camp and will not be in the running for an Opening Day roster spot with the Indians. Weiss, 27, posted a 7.24 ERA in 27 1/3 innings last season between the Double-A and Triple-A affiliates of the Twins before finishing the year with the Long Island Ducks of the independent Atlantic League.

Aaron Judge will be held out of batting practice on Tuesday for what is being termed as "maintenance on his right shoulder."
Feb 18   1:57 PM

Take a deep breath. Judge is participating in all other activities, so the situation isn't considered serious. We'll have to take their word for it for now. Judge carries immense upside, but he was limited to 102 games last season and 112 games in 2018.

Keone Kela didn't pitch live BP on Tuesday due to a viral infection.
Feb 18   12:55 PM

He should presumably be good to go in the next couple of days. Kela is set to serve as the Pirates' closer this season and should make for a useful late-round value in fantasy leagues. Of course, he could be of some interest on the trade front if he pitches well, even with a bit of a complicated history.

Dustin May is nursing a minor issue with his side, per Dodgers manager Dave Roberts.
Feb 18   12:18 PM

It doesn't sound like something that should be a lingering issue, but there's no sense in pushing things this early in camp. May posted a 3.63 ERA, 1.09 WHIP and 32/5 K/BB ratio over 34 2/3 innings during his first taste of the majors last season. He's aiming for a rotation spot this spring, though he could be on the outside looking in initially due to the numbers game.

White Sox prospect left-hander Hunter Schryver will undergo Tommy John surgery on Thursday.
Feb 18   11:26 AM

The procedure will end his season before it even began. Originally drafted by the Rays before being traded to the White Sox in 2018, Schryver put up a 4.04 ERA and 62/29 K/BB ratio over 62 1/3 relief innings between Double- and Triple-A last year. He's set to turn 25 in April.

White Sox signed OF Gorkys Hernandez to a minor league contract.
Feb 18   11:10 AM

The deal does not include an invite to big league camp. The 32-year-old batted .143/.218/.245 with a 14/5 K/BB ratio in 57 plate appearances for the Red Sox last season and will function strictly as depth for his new organization.

Brian Hoch of MLB.com writes that Kyle Higashioka is the favorite to win the backup catching spot for the Yankees.
Feb 18   9:22 AM

Higashioka is currently battling Chris Iannetta, Erik Kratz and Josh Thole for the right to backup Gary Sanchez, but right now, it appears that the 29-year-old has the upper hand. Because of Sanchez's injury history, there's a chance that whoever claims the backup gig might be in line for more playing time this summer, but they'll obviously start the season without any fantasy relevancy.

Chris Cotillo of MassLive.com reports that the Red Sox are close to a deal with free agent catcher Jonathan Lucroy.
Feb 18   8:09 AM

It sounds like it will be a minor league deal. Lucroy would provide some depth for the Red Sox behind Christian Vazquez and Kevin Plawecki. The 33-year-old batted just .232/.305/.355 over 328 plate appearances between the Cubs and Angels last year.

Anne Rogers of MLB.com reports that an update on Miles Mikolas (forearm) is expected on Tuesday or Wednesday.
Feb 18   12:14 AM

Mikolas is dealing with soreness in his flexor tendon, and he's not going to throw for the next few days. The good news is that there was no ligament damage found in his MRI, but it's understandable that the Cardinals want to take things slowly with the 31-year-old right-hander. If healthy, he's expected to operate in the middle of the St. Louis rotation in 2020.

Ann Rogers of MLB.com reports that an update on Miles Mikolas (forearm) is expected on Tuesday or Wednesday.
Feb 17   10:11 PM

Mikolas is dealing with soreness in his flexor tendon, and he's not going to throw for the next few days. The good news is that there was no ligament damage found in his MRI, but it's understandable that the Cardinals want to take things slow with the 31-year-old right-hander. If healthy, he's expected to operate in the middle of the St. Louis rotation in 2020.

Francisco Lindor may not hit in the leadoff spot to begin the 2020 season for the Indians.
Feb 17   7:20 PM

Of course, there's still a small chance that Francisco Lindor may not be hitting for the Indians at all, but that's another story. Lindor has hit in that top spot for most of his career, but Cleveland may choose to have their best player hit down a bit in the lineup in order to improve the potential run production. That could certainly help the shortstop's RBI total, but it also is possible that it could lead to a slight drop in stolen bases. It's certainly something to keep an eye on if you plan on drafting Lindor with a high draft pick this winter.

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