Jarrod Parker may be up in the major leagues next season

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In a chat with fans on MLB.com Thursday, new Diamondbacks GM Kevin Towers indicated that Jarrod Parker has a chance of starting next season with the big club.

More than likely, Jarrod will start the season in Double-A Mobile mainly because of the colder weather at the start of the season in Triple-A Reno. But he may surprise us and start the season in Phoenix if he has a strong Spring Training and appears healthy.

Towers clarified his comments to Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic on Friday.

“Certainly we’re going to be cautious with him,” Towers said, noting that they’ll have to monitor his innings workload. “We’re not going to do anything stupid here, but, to me, I don’t want to have to make that decision until the end of March. I don’t want to be making it in November.”

Parker, who was the No. 9 overall pick in the 2007 First-Year Player Draft, missed the entire 2010 season recovering from Tommy John surgery. He was regarded as one of the top starting pitching prospects in the game prior to the surgery, posting a 3.31 ERA over 44 minor league starts, averaging 8.9 K/9 and 3.0 BB/9.

Towers recently told Tom Krasovic of AOL Fanhouse that the right-hander looks “awesome” and is reaching 95 mph on the radar gun. Parker doesn’t even turn 22 until later this month, so there’s still plenty of reason for optimism here.

Carl Edwards, Jr.’s reason for skipping the Cubs’ visit to the White House is… interesting

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The Cubs oddly made an extra visit to the White House on Tuesday. After winning the World Series, the team visited then-President Barack Obama — a Chicago sports fan — in January before he left office. But they went back today for an “informal” visit with President Trump.

The Cubs, however, have ties to the Republican party and to Trump. The Ricketts family are Republican donors and Cubs owner Tom’s brother Todd is Trump’s deputy secretary of commerce. Manager Joe Maddon is also longtime friends with Lou Barletta, the Republican representative from Hazleton, PA.

Some players chose not to join their Cubs teammates for a trip to the White House. 10 players, to be exact, according to Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times. None of those players declining to go offered a political reason, understandably so. But reliever Carl Edwards, Jr.’s excuse made a lot of sense. He said, “I’m trying to go see like the dinosaur museums.” Indeed, Edwards could have spent the afternoon at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago.

Other players declining to visit the White House included Jake Arrieta, Hector Rondon, Jason Heyward, Pedro Strop, Justin Grimm, and Addison Russell.

Yankees place Matt Holliday on the DL with a viral infection

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The Yankees announced a handful of roster moves on Wednesday, including placing DH Matt Holliday on the 10-day disabled list with a viral infection. The Yankees also recalled infielder Miguel Andujar from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and outrighted DH Chris Carter to Triple-A.

Holliday, 37, had been complaining about feeling fatigued and hadn’t played since Saturday. He told manager Joe Girardi, “It feels like someone zapped me of all my energy,” MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch reported.

Holliday is batting .262/.366/.511 with 15 home runs and 47 RBI in 276 plate appearances. The Yankees inked him to a one-year, $13 million contract in December.