Report: Braves on verge of acquiring Derrek Lee from Cubs


According to David Kaplan of the Braves are close to trading for Cubs first baseman Derrek Lee, who will reportedly agree to the move despite using his no-trade rights to turn down a proposal to join the Angels last month.
Whereas the Angels were hovering around .500 and barely clinging to contention at the time Lee rejected that trade the Braves are in first place with the NL’s second-best record at 70-47.
Lee is an impending free agent and has recently been sidelined by a back injury, so Kaplan reports that “the trade is not expected to land the Cubs much in the way of talent” in return. Instead the Braves are apparently willing to absorb most of his remaining salary.
Lee has hit just .251/.335/.416 in 109 games this season for his first sub-.800 OPS since 1999, but even that would be an upgrade over the non-existent production the Braves have gotten at first base recently from the slumping Troy Glaus and Lee has hit .315/.359/.542 with six homers and nine doubles over the past 30 games.

David Phelps to undergo Tommy John surgery

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Pitcher David Phelps has a torn UCL and will undergo Tommy John surgery, ending his 2018 season, the Mariners announced on Wednesday. Phelps was making brief one-inning stints in the Cactus League as he worked his way back from a procedure to remove a bone spur from his elbow last September. He said he felt the ligament tear on his final pitch against the Angels in his March 17 appearance.

Phelps, 31, was expected to set up for closer Edwin Diaz. The right-hander, between the Marlins and Mariners last season, posted a 3.40 ERA with a 62/26 K/BB ratio in 55 2/3 innings. He and the Mariners avoided arbitration in January, agreeing on a $5.55 million salary for the 2018 campaign. Phelps will become eligible to become a free agent at the end of the season.

As the Mariners noted in their statement, the expected recovery period for Tommy John surgery is 12-15 months, so this very likely cuts into Phelps’ 2019 season as well.