Truck Day: just another chance to try and sell you something

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It’s Truck Day in Boston, which means that boxes of gloves, bats, balls snuff cans and Gold Bond Medicated Powder are being loaded into the back of a rig outside Fenway Park and will soon depart for Red Sox spring training in Fort Myers, Florida.

There’s been a lot of grumpy chatter from Red Sox fans this year over the fact that so many other teams are suddenly celebrating their own version of Truck Day. It’s like one of their valued traditions is being stolen from them, they’re saying. What will people steal next? Neil Diamond songs? Pink caps? Binge drinking? Is nothing sacred?!

I was sympathetic about this cultural theft until I learned this morning that the Red Sox’ February rite has corporate sponsorship:

The 2010 Spring Training Truck Day presented by JetBlue Airways is
scheduled for Friday, February 12. The Red Sox equipment truck will
depart Fenway Park for the 1,480-mile trip to the club’s Spring
Training home in Fort Myers, Florida on Friday at approximately 12 noon . . .

. . . Fans are also welcome to stop by and see JetBlue Airways, The Official
Airline of the Boston Red Sox, and Wally the Green Monster between 11
a.m. and 12 p.m. at the Yawkey Way Store next to Fenway for their
chance to win a roundtrip flight on JetBlue, a trip to Spring Training
in Ft. Myers, and other great prizes.

Can I ask a dumb question? Why is an airline sponsoring an event which glorifies alternative transportation?

Mets place Zack Wheeler on the 10-day disabled list

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The Mets announced on Monday that starter Zack Wheeler has been placed on the 10-day disabled list with a stress reaction in his right arm. Pitcher Tyler Pill has been recalled from Triple-A Las Vegas.

Wheeler, 27, has a 5.21 ERA with an 81/40 K/BB ratio in 86 1/3 innings this season. He joins a long list of injured Mets, including rotation mates Noah Syndergaard, Matt Harvey, Tommy Milone, and Robert Gsellman. It’s not clear at the moment how long Wheeler will be out.

Pill, 27, has spent most of his season with Las Vegas, with which he has a 3.47 ERA over 13 starts. He has made three starts and two relief appearances in the majors this season as well.

Report: Royals acquire Brandon Maurer, Ryan Buchter, Trevor Cahill from Padres

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Robert Murray of FanRag Sports reports that the Royals are acquiring pitchers Brandon Maurer, Ryan Buchter, and Trevor Cahill from the Padres in exchange for Matt Strahm, Travis Wood, and Esteury Ruiz. Jon Heyman has confirmed the deal.

Maurer, 27, has saved 20 games for the Padres this year despite a 5.72 ERA. He carries with him a 38/8 K/BB ratio in 39 1/3 innings. The right-hander is arbitration-eligible going into the next two seasons and can become a free agent after the 2019 season.

Buchter, 30, owns a 3.05 ERA with a 47/18 K/BB ratio in 38 1/3 innings of relief work this season with the Padres. He’ll be under team control through 2021.

Cahill, 29, has posted a 3.69 ERA with a 72/24 K/BB ratio in 61 innings across 11 starts. He can become a free agent after the season.

Strahm, 25, put up a 5.45 ERA with a 37/22 K/BB ratio in 34 2/3 innings. He underwent season-ending knee surgery on July 7 and will miss the rest of the season.

Wood, 30, has a 6.91 ERA with a 29/20 K/BB ratio in 41 2/3 innings. Given his experience out of both the starting rotation and the bullpen, he can pitch in a swingman role. The lefty is under contract next year for $6.5 million. Wood has a mutual option for 2019 worth $8 million with a $1 million buyout.

Ruiz, 18, signed with the Royals as an international free agent out of the Dominican Republic in July 2015. This season, in rookie ball, he hit .419/.440/.779 in 91 plate appearances. Ruiz has played both second base and shortstop.