Volstad working on lengthy scoreless innings streak

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Marlins right-hander Chris Volstad opened the 2010 season firmly entrenched in the club’s starting rotation.  But a rough April and a brutal July saw to his demotion to Triple-A New Orleans before the month of August.

He doesn’t look like the same pitcher now.

Volstad fired 6 2/3 shutout innings on Saturday against the Brewers and tossed a complete-game shutout last week against the Cardinals.  He’s up to 15 2/3 straight scoreless innings and, according to the Palm Beach Post, is now 7-1 with a 4.44 ERA since his return to the big leagues in late August.

“Something clicked in him,’ manager Edwin Rodriguez. “It could be
his release point. It could be confidence in his pitches, because pretty
much he has the same stuff that he had earlier in the year. Something is
working for him now and he feels very confident and attacking hitters.”

The 6-foot-8 righty was selected in the first round of the 2005 draft.  He is slowly living up to the hype.

Rays trade Jake Odorizzi to Twins

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The Rays have traded right-hander Jake Odorizzi to the Twins, per team announcements on Saturday evening. The Twins will receive minor league shortstop Jermaine Palacios in the deal. Despite previous speculation, recently-DFA’d outfielder Corey Dickerson was not included in the trade.

With Odorizzi, the Twins finally have the front-end starter they’ve been seeking all winter. It’s a bargain deal as well, as the 27-year-old righty is under contract through 2019 and didn’t require the club to part with any of their top-shelf prospects in the trade. Odorizzi will be looking to stage a comeback in 2018 after a dismal performance with the Rays last year, during which he eked out a career-worst 4.14 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 8.0 SO/9 through 143 1/3 innings.

Palacios, 21, ranked no. 27 in the Twins’ system last season. He split his year between Single-A Cedar Rapids and High-A Fort Myers, raking a combined .296/.333/.454 with 13 home runs and 20 stolen bases in 539 plate appearances. He’s expected to continue developing at shortstop, though he’s also seen limited time at second and third base during his four-year career in the minors.