Xavier Nady headed for Tommy John elbow surgery

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As expected, the Yankees have confirmed that Xavier Nady will undergo season-ending Tommy John elbow surgery, likely ending his time in New York after just 66 games.

Nady was acquired from the Pirates last July with his value at an
all-time high thanks to a fluky .330 batting average, but he’d hit a
more modest .272/.327/.441 coming into the season and predictably
regressed to those numbers by batting .268/.320/.474 in 59 post-trade
games with the Yankees.

Nady took over as the Yankees’ starting right fielder this season
following the departure of free agent Bobby Abreu, but played just
seven games before leaving a mid-April game with a “sharp pain” in his
elbow. Reports immediately surfaced that he’d need surgery, but Nady
opted instead to rehab the injury and appeared to be making solid
progress in his recovery before suffering a setback in a minor-league
game last week.

Now he’s facing 9-12 months on the sidelines and the Yankees seem
unlikely to make a strong effort to re-sign the impending free agent
when bigger, healthier bats will no doubt be available this winter. All
of which means that they’ll end up parting with Jose Tabata, Ross
Ohlendorf, Jeff Karstens, and Daniel McCutcheon for 66 games of Nady
hitting .270/.319/.469 and 23.2 innings of a 7.61 ERA from Damaso
Marte.

Meanwhile, the Pirates have already gotten 238 innings of 4.57 ERA
pitching from Ohlendorf and Karstens, both of whom are in their mid-20s
and under team control at low salaries for the foreseeable future.
Tabata was actually the centerpiece of the deal and at 20 years old
still has considerable long-term upside, but he’s battled injuries
while hitting just .269/.343/.359 in 135 games at Double-A since the
trade.

Steven Matz likely to start season on DL; Zack Wheeler to adhere to innings limit

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Mets manager Terry Collins said on Wednesday, “It’s unlikely that [Steven Matz] will start the season with us.” The final spot in the Mets’ starting rotation will go to either Zack Wheeler or Seth Lugo, Newsday’s Marc Carig reports.

On Wheeler’s innings limit, assistant GM John Ricco said, “There’s going to be some number but we don’t exactly know what that is.” Wheeler missed the last two seasons after undergoing Tommy John surgery.

Neither Wheeler nor Lugo have had terrific springs as each carries a 5.11 and 5.56 Grapefruit League ERA, respectively. However, Carig notes that Wheeler has impressed simply by appearing healthy and brandishing a fastball that once again sits in the mid- to high-90’s. Lugo, meanwhile, proved crucial to the Mets last year, posting a 2.67 ERA across eight starts and nine relief appearances.

Rockies sign 30-year lease to stay in Coors Field

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Nick Groke of the Denver Post reports that the Rockies agreed to a $200 million, 30-year lease with the Metropolitan Baseball Stadium District, which is the state division that owns Coors Field. As part of the deal, the Rockies will lease and develop a plot of land south of the stadium, which will cost the team $125 million for 99 years.

As Groke points out, had the Rockies not reached a deal by Thursday, March 30, the lease would have rolled over for five more years.

Rockies owner Dick Monfort issued a statement, saying, “We are proud that Coors Field will continue to be a vital part of a vibrant city, drawing fans from near and far and making our Colorado residents proud.”

The Rockies moved into Coors Field in 1995. It is the National League’s third oldest stadium. In that span of time, the Rockies have made the playoffs three times, the last coming in 2009 when they lost in the NLDS to the Phillies. The Rockies were swept in the 2007 World Series by the Red Sox.