Mets starter Mike Pelfrey undergoes MRI on shoulder

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Even though he complained of shoulder tightness following his outing in a loss to the Phillies on Saturday and had an MRI on Monday, Mike Pelfrey remains scheduled to make his start Friday versus the Giants.
SI.com’s Jon Heyman didn’t have any results from the MRI, but we imagine Mets doctors found nothing remarkable. Then again, we doubt Mets doctors would notice anything out of the ordinary here either.
Pelfrey was stellar in four starts this season before giving up six runs and his first homer of the year in four innings Saturday. He didn’t rack up big pitch counts in any of his outings, but it is worth noting that he pitched in relief in the 20-inning game April 17 against the Cardinals. That appearance came two days after he threw 109 pitches and three days before he threw 102 more.
Since the Mets have Thursday off, they have the option of pushing back Pelfrey to next Tuesday without having to go to an extra starter in the meantime. That they wouldn’t even go that route to help protect one of the franchise’s most important players is surprising.

Report: Phillies interested in Manny Machado; Orioles have done homework on Phillies’ minor league system

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Orioles third baseman Manny Machado will become a free agent after the 2018 season and there hasn’t been much in the way of progress on a contract extension between the two sides. It seems as if Machado will test the open market next offseason.

The Phillies, currently with relatively minuscule obligations for the 2018 season and beyond, are expected to be big players for Machado, as well as other potential free agents like Bryce Harper. In fact, the Phillies may not even want to wait until next offseason, as Roch Kubatko of MASN reports that the club has expressed interest in Machado to the Orioles. In return, the O’s have been doing their homework on the Phillies’ minor league system.

Kubatko notes that the Orioles like, in particular, Phillies prospects Sixto Sanchez and Scott Kingery. The Phillies may be hesitant to part with either considering they can get Machado for a lot of cash but no prospects next winter. MLB Pipeline rates Sanchez as the Phillies’ best pitching prospect and the second-best prospect overall in the system. Kingery is third overall and the top infielder. While the Phillies’ system is among the best in baseball, its notable weakness is pitching, so parting with Sanchez — who throws in the upper 90’s and can hit triple digits — would be a big ask. Kingery is seen as the club’s next second baseman of the future, so much so that the Phillies are shopping Cesar Hernandez at the Winter Meetings.

As usual with rumors during the Winter Meetings, there may be some smoke but no actual fire here. The Orioles are likely to get continued interest in Machado from many teams between now and the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline. They are simply doing their due diligence by seeing what the Phillies and others have to offer for Machado.