Rizzo: Stephen Strasburg will not be rushed

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strasburg on the mound.JPGStephen Strasburg boasts a 2-0 record, 0.73 ERA and a 17/3 K/BB ratio through three starts (12 1/3 innings) at Double-A Harrisburg and is certainly ready for more of a challenge.  But don’t expect a promotion to the big leagues anytime soon.

Nationals GM Mike Rizzo hinted to CSN Washington’s Mark Zuckerman on Wednesday that the 21-year-old standout will not be rushed through the organization, no matter how well he pitches.

“I’ve got a tentative plan in my mind, that I’m not going to share with
you guys,” Rizzo said with a laugh
Wednesday. “But we see that he certainly needs more work down in the
minor leagues. We’re going to see him in the big leagues, and when we
see him in the big leagues, we hope he’s here for good.”

It’s less about performance and development than it is about money, of course.  By leaving Strasburg in the minors until early June, the Nats can prevent him from reaching Super-Two status, which gives a player an extra year of arbitration.  In the end, patience could save the Nationals nearly $20 million.

Indians sign Melky Cabrera to a minor league deal

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The Indians have signed free agent outfielder Melky Cabrera to a minor league deal. The pact is pending a physical.

Cabrera, 33, went unsigned this past offseason after putting up a season of .285/.324/.423 with 17 homers and 85 RBI with the White Sox and the Royals.

Cabrera will report to Columbus once he passes his physical and, according to Paul Hoynes, there are no guarantees being made to him that he’ll get playing time. That said, the Indians aren’t getting much outfield production from anyone besides Michael Brantley, and Cabrera’s status as a switch hitter would give Terry Francona some flexibility, so it would not be shocking to see him on the big club after some reps in the minors.