Rumors, rumors, rumors

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They’re starting to fly like crazy, so we may as well throw them out there like so much pasta at so many walls:

The Brewers are supposedly “serious players” for Halladay.
I’m not buying it. For one thing, they went that route last year with
Sabathia and I doubt they’d do it again. For another, the rumor comes
from Jon Heyman and he’s pretty much always wrong.

Nick Cardafo of the Boston Globe
thinks that Theo Epstein’s little moves yesterday with LaRoche and
Duncan suggests that he’s going to make a play for Halladay. Maybe so.
Maybe it wouldn’t be a bad idea for him to try and turn Clay Buchholz
into a big bat while his value is still high, too, because based on his
first couple of big league starts he looks like he has nibbler’s
disease.

Morosi has a bunch of stuff:
The Indians may trade Cliff Lee to the Rays, though it could take a
three-way trade to make that happen. The Twins could use infield help
and may be thinking Orlando Cabrera or one of the Pirates’ guys.
Finally, it appears that no one is all that interested in Matt
Holliday. My guess is that he’s going to be acquired in exchange for
some magic beans right before the deadline next Friday, because the A’s
probably need the couple of million he’s owed more than they need the
draft pick he’d bring when he walks after ths season.

As always, these rumors are guaranteed to be 100% dicey, doubtful and dubious, or your money back!

Steven Matz to skip next spring training start with elbow issues

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Mets’ left-hander Steven Matz will miss his Grapefruit League appearance on Monday after experiencing soreness in his left elbow, according to a report by Mike Puma of the New York Post. Matz reportedly first felt discomfort in his elbow on Wednesday after pitching four innings against the Marlins, but a medical evaluation revealed no structural damage.

Still, it’s unsettling news for the 25-year-old, who is coming off of an injury-riddled 2016 season. Matz pitched to a 3.40 ERA, 2.1 BB/9 and 8.8 SO/9 during his sophomore campaign with the Mets, but his success was hampered by a bevy of shoulder and elbow issues that culminated in season-ending surgery to remove bone spurs from his left elbow.

Comments from Mets’ GM Sandy Alderson indicated that while the club doesn’t believe anything is significantly wrong with Matz’s elbow this time around, the setback could have an impact on his chances of cracking the Opening Day roster. Until he’s cleared to return to the mound, the club is expected to take a longer look at rotation candidates Robert Gsellman, Zack Wheeler and Seth Lugo.

Video: Andrew Toles hammers grand slam in Cactus League win

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Dodgers’ left fielder Andrew Toles crushed his first spring training home run on Saturday afternoon. With the bases loaded and a two-run deficit hanging over their heads in the fourth inning, Toles stepped up to the plate against Oakland right-hander Jesse Hahn and unloaded a grand slam on the second pitch he saw.

Third baseman Justin Turner was quick to follow up with a solo jack of his own, bringing the score to a comfortable 7-4 lead by the end of the fourth. Another three-run outburst in the fifth and an eighth-inning RBI single by Austin Barnes raised the final score to 11-6… which, coincidentally, was the same score the Reds used to defeat the Athletics’ second split-squad lineup on Saturday (albeit with a few more RBI walks than grand slams).

Toles, 24, is approaching his sophomore season with the Dodgers in 2017. He slashed .314/.365/.505 with three home runs and an .870 OPS in his first major league season in 2016 and is expected to platoon with the right-handed Franklin Gutierrez in left field this year.