Miller Park flooded

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In the past, when snow, storms and floods have made baseball an
impossible task someplace, Miller Park in Milwaukee has pinch-hit as
the “home” park for the affected team. Now, it seems, it may need a pinch-hitter of its own:

Miller Park sustained significant flooding after a band of severe
storms slammed Milwaukee late Wednesday night and early Thursday
morning, and crews have worked around the clock since then to clean up
the mess and replace damaged carpet, drywall and furniture . . . The
key concern on Sunday afternoon was the electrical system. As the
Brewers were playing the final innings of their 3-2 loss in Detroit,
power was just being restored at Miller Park, substation by substation.

Water rose knee-high in several areas of the ballpark’s service
level, which includes office and storage space for the Brewers,
Sportservice and the sheriff’s department. It was only ankle-deep in
the main areas of the clubhouse, according to a team spokesperson,
sparing the equipment left behind in the players’ lockers . . . “I’d
say it’s functional, but not normal,” Brewers assistant general manager
Gord Ash said. “It’s a big deal, and it’s probably going to be a period
of time before it’s taken care of.”

The immediately affected series is against the Twins. Sense would
dictate that it be shifted to Minnesota. It’s close, it will be empty,
and there’s no chance whatsoever of a rainout. I’m sure some Brewer
fans would complain about losing a couple of home games, but it seems
like it would be well worth it if it gave crews a little more time to
fix all of the damage.

Jason Kipnis diagnosed with a strained rotator cuff

CLEVELAND, OH - NOVEMBER 02:  Jason Kipnis #22 of the Cleveland Indians celebrates after scoring a run on a wild pitch thrown by Jon Lester #34 of the Chicago Cubs (not pictured) during the fifth inning in Game Seven of the 2016 World Series at Progressive Field on November 2, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
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Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis has been diagnosed with a strained rotator cuff in his right shoulder, MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian reports. Kipnis has received a cortisone shot and will be shut down from throwing for the next four to five days.

There’s a lot of spring left, so it’s perfectly sensible for the Indians to play it safe with their star player. The club already had Kipnis on a shoulder strengthening program.

Kipnis, 29, helped the Indians to the playoffs after batting .275/.343/.469 with 23 home runs, 92 RBI, 91 runs scored, and 15 stolen bases in 688 plate appearances during the regular season last year. He then helped the Indians reach Game 7 of the World Series against the Cubs, where they were eventually stopped, as he provided a .741 OPS including four homers and eight RBI in 15 playoff games.

Report: Cardinals are scouting Cuban outfielder Luis Robert

ST. LOUIS, MO - APRIL 25: Baseballs sit in the St. Louis Cardinals dugout prior to a game between the Pittsburgh Pirates and the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium on April 25, 2014 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by David Welker/Getty Images)
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According to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the Cardinals are keeping an eye on outfield prospect Luis Robert. The 19-year-old left his native Cuba last November and is expected to command interest from multiple MLB teams as he approaches free agency. Goold adds that the Cardinals sent scouts to evaluate Robert’s workouts in the Dominican Republic as recently as last week.

There’s still a good chance that the club won’t get a shot at signing him; as Craig mentioned last month, it seems likely that Major League Baseball won’t declare Robert a free agent until after June 15. By July 2, the new Collective Bargaining Agreement’s policies on international bonuses will go into effect, handcuffing teams with the maximum penalty for bonuses to a $300,000 signing figure for any available international prospect. It’s designed to effectively take away those teams’ abilities to sign additional international talent, and the Cardinals have already spent a reported $9.35 million in bonuses on Venezuelan outfielder Victor Garcia, Cuban outfielders Jonatan Machado and Randy Arozarena and Cuban right-hander Johan Oviedo.

Until the cutoff in mid-June, the Cardinals are likely to continue actively scouting other international talent, including Robert. MLB.com’s Jesse Sanchez quotes an anonymous National League scouting director who describes Robert as the No. 2 talent behind Japanese wunderkind Shohei Otani. The 19-year-old hit .286/.319/.397 with a .716 OPS during a 16-game run in the Canadian-American League in 2016, following up an impressive three-year tenure with the Ciego de Avila in the Cuban National Series from 2013-2015.