Carl Crawford leaves Rays-Padres game early

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UPDATE: Of course, two minutes after I hit “post” on this bad boy word comes down: Crawford has a sore shoulder. Not sure why it’s sore. I won’t even speculate, because the minute I do someone will say it was for some other reason. Upshot: Crawford is out of the Rays-Padres game. Adjust your wagers appropriately.

1:21 P.M.: The Padres and Rays are playing a daytime tilt and Carl Crawford just left the game for no apparent reason. Crawford had grounded out to second base in his first at-bat, but then was replaced by Ben Zobrist.

It has to be some kind of an injury. Guys often leave games with bad calfs or groins or whatever after getting back to the dugout and stiffening up. Though a lot of folks on Twitter — fan types, not media types — are speculating that he’s been traded.

Honestly, though: when was the last time an in-game trade happened like that? I can’t think of it ever happening outside of spring training. That stuff happens before or after a game, not during.  And it’s not like anyone has heard a peep of a hint of a Crawford trade lately.

My guess, based on the fact that I spent a night in a Holiday Inn Express last March: illness or some kind of a leg problem.

Braves sign David Hernandez

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Bill Whitehead of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that the Braves have signed reliever David Hernandez to a minor league contract on Sunday. He’ll report to spring training as a non-roster invitee.

Hernandez, who turns 32 years old in May, signed a minor league contract with the Giants in February. He requested and was granted his release on Friday when he learned he wasn’t making the team’s 25-man roster to open the season.

Hernandez pitched for the Phillies last year. He compiled a 3.84 ERA with an 80/32 K/BB ratio in 72 2/3 innings.

Dave Roberts: It “doesn’t make sense” for Scott Kazmir to start year in Dodgers’ rotation

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Scott Kazmir won’t begin the regular season in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Manager Dave Roberts said after Kazmir’s Cactus League outing on Sunday that it “doesn’t make sense” for the ailing Kazmir to break camp in the rotation, Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times reports. The lefty will instead rehab some more and join the rotation at a later time.

Kazmir has been battling a hip issue which has caused his mechanics to suffer. He was clocked in the low 80’s 10 days ago and wasn’t much better on Sunday afternoon.

Last season with the Dodgers, Kazmir posted a 4.56 ERA with a 134/52 K/BB ratio in 136 1/3 innings, his worst numbers since returning to the majors in 2013.