UPDATE: ESPN.com’s Buster Olney reports that the Rays are also keen on Hudson and might be willing to move Ben Zobrist to right field in order to accommodate him.
7:03pm: MLB.com’s Bill Ladson heard from a baseball source Tuesday that the Nationals “have a good chance of signing” free agent second baseman Orlando Hudson.
“There is good progress going on every day,” Hudson told MLB.com. “I will sign
soon enough. You can put it on the Internet and on TV. I’m going to
sign. I can’t say exactly when. It will not be long. I can’t say if it’s
with the Nationals, San Diego or Cleveland. I can’t say with whom.
Something is getting done.”
The “O-Dog” hit .283/.357/.417 with nine home runs, 62 RBI and eight stolen bases in 551 at-bats for the Dodgers last season. He’s found little interest on the open market this winter, but it feels like we could see a flurry of free agent signings within the next week or two. After all, pitchers and catchers are scheduled to report to spring camp in just 19 days.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts announced on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu will open the regular season in the starting rotation, MLB.com’s Ken Gurnick reports.
Ryu, 30, missed the entire 2015 season and made only one start last season due to shoulder and elbow injuries. The lefty has looked solid in three spring appearances, however, yielding a lone run on five hits and a walk with eight strikeouts in nine innings.
With Scott Kazmir likely to begin the season on the disabled list, that leaves Alex Wood and Brandon McCarthy to battle it out for the fifth spot in the Dodgers’ rotation.
Royals outfielder Jorge Soler has been diagnosed with a strained oblique, making it likely that he begins the regular season on the disabled list, Rustin Dodd of The Kansas City Star reports.
The Royals acquired Soler from the Cubs in December in exchange for reliever Wade Davis. Over parts of three seasons with the Cubs, Soler hit .258/.328/.434 with 27 home runs and 98 RBI in 765 plate appearances.
When he’s healthy, Soler is expected to find himself in the Royals’ lineup as a right fielder and occasionally as a designated hitter.