Bud Black: “there’s room to talk” about moving the fences in at Petco Park

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I’m hesitant to say that Padres manager Bud Black would like the fences to be moved in, because it seems from the article that the subject was brought up by reporters — and has been so brought up multiple times recently — and that Black was trying to be a bit coy with respect to his true feelings.

But hey, when has my hesitation to say anything stopped me before? It sounds like Bud Black wants the fences moved in at Petco Park:

On Monday, Bud Black was asked what his stance was on moving in the PETCO Park fences.

“I think there’s room for discussion,” Black said, choosing his words carefully before taking a long pause and repeating himself. “I just think there’s room to talk about it in our park.”

Black didn’t expand on what he said, but he hasn’t been one to typically discuss the park’s dimensions, even to that extent.

This kind of talk always depresses me.  The park is the park and both the home team and the visiting team have to play in it.  It if depresses offense, hey, it helps pitching, and that’s something that has benefited the Padres in recent years. And, as has been mentioned before, the benefits could be more than merely turning a few bad pitches into fly outs instead of homers. It could help San Diego on the business side as they are able to court pitchers in need of a career rejuvenation to relatively low-dollar one-year deals that a lot of teams would love. Jon Garland anyone? Aaron Harang?

For the rest of us: variety is the spice of life. There were so many small parks built in the past 20 years that it’s nice to have a couple that play big.  Leave Petco alone!

Hyun-Jin Ryu will open season in Dodgers’ rotation

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Dodgers manager Dave Roberts announced on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu will open the regular season in the starting rotation, MLB.com’s Ken Gurnick reports.

Ryu, 30, missed the entire 2015 season and made only one start last season due to shoulder and elbow injuries. The lefty has looked solid in three spring appearances, however, yielding a lone run on five hits and a walk with eight strikeouts in nine innings.

With Scott Kazmir likely to begin the season on the disabled list, that leaves Alex Wood and Brandon McCarthy to battle it out for the fifth spot in the Dodgers’ rotation.

Jorge Soler diagnosed with strained oblique, Opening Day in doubt

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Royals outfielder Jorge Soler has been diagnosed with a strained oblique, making it likely that he begins the regular season on the disabled list, Rustin Dodd of The Kansas City Star reports.

The Royals acquired Soler from the Cubs in December in exchange for reliever Wade Davis. Over parts of three seasons with the Cubs, Soler hit .258/.328/.434 with 27 home runs and 98 RBI in 765 plate appearances.

When he’s healthy, Soler is expected to find himself in the Royals’ lineup as a right fielder and occasionally as a designated hitter.