Or so Ken Rosenthal reports. I can’t imagine why they’d want to go with another aging, ex-Red Sox defensive liability in left field after getting rid of Manny Ramirez, but there’s a lot I don’t understand about this world.
If the Dodgers do sign Damon, it would just be the latest in a series of bold moves for a team that many thought would be doing nothing this winter. They’ve already signed Ted Lilly, Juan Uribe, Hiroki Kuroda and Jon Garland for cryin’ out loud. I’d like a Damon signing the least among those moves, however. This is a team that has a pretty nice rotation and a centerfielder in Matt Kemp who took a big step back defensively last season. You think you’d want someone in left who could get after the ball. Or, better yet, a centerfielder who could do so, allowing Kemp to be shifted to left.
As for Damon, if the Dodgers don’t really have any interest in him, no worries: Jon Heyman says that he’d be a great fit on all manner of AL East teams. And if you can’t believe what Heyman says about a Scott Boras client, what can you believe in this crazy world?
Jake Arrieta‘s bat is in midseason form already. The Cubs’ ace swatted a solo home run to center field off of Zack Greinke in Thursday afternoon’s Grapefruit League exhibition game, his first homer of the spring.
The blast went 465 feet, according to MLB.com’s Daren Willman.
Arrieta has hit two home runs in each of the past two seasons. Madison Bumgarner (eight) and Noah Syndergaard (four) are the only other pitchers to match or exceed his output in that department.
Greinke, meanwhile, is hoping to bounce back after a miserable 2016 season. He finished with an uncharacteristic 4.37 ERA in 26 starts in his first year with the Diamondbacks.
Angels first baseman Luis Valbuena will miss the next four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.
Valbuena, 31, signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Angels in January and was on track to get the lion’s share of the playing time at first base. While he’s out, however, C.J. Cron will handle first base on a regular basis. When Valbeuna returns, the two will likely form a platoon.
Last year with the Astros, Valbuena hit a solid .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances.