Clayton Kershaw suspended five games, will appeal

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As first reported by Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times, Major League Baseball handed a five-game suspension to Dodgers starter Clayton Kershaw on Wednesday for intentionally throwing at Giants outfielder Aaron Rowand on Tuesday night.

Dodgers manager Joe Torre and bench coach Bob Schaefer were also suspended one game each for their actions following Kershaw’s ejection.

The left-handed Kershaw has decided to appeal and will remain available to the Dodgers until that process is carried out.  He may be able to avoid missing a start if all goes according to plan.

Through 20 starts this season, Kershaw has posted a 9-5 record, a 3.15 ERA and a 1.24 WHIP.  He has also fanned 135 batters in 122 2/3 innings for a 9.90 K/9 that ranks first among all National League starters.  The Dodgers are 49-45 on the season — six games back of the Padres in the National League West.

Indians sign Melvin Upton Jr. to a minor league deal

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The Cleveland Indians have agreed to a minor league deal with outfielder Melvin Upton, Jr.

Upton, 33, battled a torn thumb ligament and a shoulder issue last season, limiting him to only 12 games with Triple-A Sacramento, the Giants’ affiliate. In those 12 games, he hit .244 with one double and one home run. Upton last played in the majors in 2016 with the Padres and Blue Jays with which he posted an aggregate .693 OPS.

Given the injuries suffered by Indians outfielders in the past couple of seasons it can’t hurt to have some options for organizational depth. If he has anything left in the tank, stash him on the bench or down in Columbus. If not, no harm done.