Scott Kazmir

The Yankees are kicking the tires on various lefties


Andy Pettitte is gone. And it’s always the same after a breakup. The spurned one goes cruising for randoms:  Rosenthal reports that people in the Yankees front office are discussing Joe Saunders, Scott Kazmir, Wade LeBlanc, Clayton Richard and Gio Gonzalez.

It’s less a shopping list than a brainstorming session, it seems.  But it certainly doesn’t seem like the case that the Yankees are content to simply stand pat on the rotation.  As we discussed yesterday, depth is a concern.  Any of those guys — to the extent they’re actually available anyway — are good depth options.

The real issue right now is timing. We’re at the point of the offseason where most teams have talked themselves into liking their roster. Or at least they’ve talked their season ticket holders into liking it.  Thus there are few teams who are really going to want to give up a serviceable starting pitcher.  Unless it’s an overpay or the assumption of a truly odious contract  — which I don’t think the Yankees are willing to do just yet — teams will tend to wait for their seasons to go a little bit sideways before making trades.  As such, this is all so much spitballin’ at the moment.

ALDS, Game 1: Rangers vs. Blue Jays lineups

Toronto Blue Jays' starting pitcher David Price works against the Baltimore Orioles during first inning of a baseball game in Toronto, Saturday, Sept. 5, 2015. (Darren Calabrese/The Canadian Press via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT

Here are the Rangers and Blue Jays lineups for Game 1 of the ALDS in Toronto:

CF Delino DeShields
RF Shin-Soo Choo
3B Adrian Beltre
DH Prince Fielder
1B Mike Napoli
LF Josh Hamilton
SS Elvis Andrus
2B Rougned Odor
C Robinson Chirinos

SP Yovani Gallardo

With left-hander David Price on the mound for Toronto the Rangers are going with Mike Napoli at first base over Mitch Moreland. Beyond that it’s a pretty standard lineup for Texas, or at least standard for what manager Jeff Banister used down the stretch once Josh Hamilton was healthy enough to play left field.

LF Ben Revere
3B Josh Donaldson
RF Jose Bautista
DH Edwin Encarnacion
SS Troy Tulowitzki
1B Justin Smoak
C Russell Martin
2B Ryan Goins
CF Kevin Pillar

SP David Price

After returning from the disabled list for the final weekend of the regular season Troy Tulowitzki is in the lineup and batting fifth. That allows Ryan Goins to play second base in place of the injured Devon Travis. Justin Smoak gets the nod over Chris Colabello at first base against a right-hander.

Astros leave Chad Qualls off playoff roster, add Preston Tucker

Chad Qualls Getty
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Houston made one unexpected change to the roster for the ALDS, leaving off veteran reliever Chad Qualls.

Qualls warmed up but never appeared in the Wild Card game win over the Yankees and during the regular season the 36-year-old right-hander logged 49 innings with a 4.38 ERA and 46/9 K/BB ratio. Qualls was on the Astros’ last playoff team in 2005.

Utility man Jonathan Villar has been bumped off the roster in favor of outfielder Preston Tucker, as the Astros opted for a good left-handed bat off the bench versus the Royals rather than Villar’s speed.