Yankees, Red Sox both interested in Scott Downs

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AOL’s Ed Price says that the Yankees and the Red Sox have “a big time interest” in Blue Jays’ reliever Scott Downs.

And he’s definitely interesting. He has a 2.56 ERA in 38.2 innings, and has a K/BB ratio of 30/8.  Both the Yankees and the Red Sox could use some bullpen help, but it’s an open question as to whether the Jays would trade within the division.

Well, maybe. I think that “trade within the division” thing is used more often as a means of extracting a higher price than it is used to indicate a total unwillingness to deal. Besides, Downs is a free agent after this season, so barring some playoff race heroics, he’s not likely to stick around the AL East even if he is traded.

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.