Folks are doubting Bartolo Colon

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Bob Klapisch writes about Bartolo Colon and the stem cell procedure he received.  He doesn’t go as far as John Harper did with Jose Bautista in terms of veiled accusations of PED use, but if you could find any evidence in his story that he believes Colon and his doctor when they say that Colon is clean, please point it out to me, because I can’t find it.

Most of the article is spent talking about Major League Baseball’s suspicions of Colon, even though no Major League Baseball official has been willing to go on record with any suspicions.  And this passage provides some pretty good guilt-by-association fodder:

Bud Selig will be looking for ways to govern players on hiatus or in semi-retirement, especially those living in other countries. Currently, there’s no way to stop anyone from loading up, whether it’s HGH or steroids. Colon, then, would fit neatly into the Yankees’ PED culture of the early 2000s. There was Roger Clemens, Andy Pettitte, Jason Giambi, Chuck Knoblauch, David Justice – and now Colon. But Purita is protesting any loose logic that indicts his client.

The alpha and omega of the case against Colon is that he worked with a doctor who has used HGH in his practice with other patients.  That’s it.  Of course, Marlon Byrd uses BALCO’s Victor Conte as his supplement provider and we don’t assume that he’s dirty, so there must be something else at play here.

The only thing I can figure: a guy we thought was finished turns out not to be finished after all.  Something which, once upon a time, we thought was a pretty uplifting story.  Guess we don’t think that anymore.

Report: Diamondbacks acquire Steven Souza from Rays; Yankees land Brandon Drury

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Update (6:35 PM ET): This is a three-team deal also involving the Diamondbacks, per Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic. The Diamondbacks will receive outfielder Steven Souza from the Rays and second baseman Brandon Drury will head to the Yankees. Lefty reliever Anthony Banda will go to the Rays, Piecoro adds. The Diamondbacks will also receive prospect Taylor Widener from the Yankees, per Joel Sherman of the New York Post. MLB.com’s Steve Gilbert adds that the Rays will get two players to be named later from the D-Backs.

Souza, 28, is earning $3.55 million in his first of three years of arbitration eligibility, so the Rays are presumably saving money in moving him. Last season, Souza hit a productive .239/.351/.459 with 30 home runs, 78 RBI, 78 runs scored, and 16 stolen bases in 617 plate appearances. Souza’s arrival almost certainly pushes Yasmany Tomas out of a starting gig.

Drury, 25, has played a handful of positions in his brief major league career. Last year, he played second base in Arizona, batting .267/.317/.447 with 13 home runs and 63 RBI in 480 PA.

Banda, 24, made his major league debut last season, posting an ugly 5.96 ERA with a 25/10 K/BB ratio in 25 2/3 innings. The peripherals suggest he pitched better than his ERA indicated.

Widener, 23, was selected by the Yankees in the 12th round of the 2016 draft. This past season with High-A Tampa, he pitched 119 1/3 innings and posted a 3.39 ERA with a 129/50 K/BB ratio. MLB Pipeline rated Widener as the 14th-best prospect in the Yankees’ system.

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Robert Murray of FanRag Sports reports that the Rays will acquire second base prospect Nick Solak from the Yankees. The Yankees’ return is presently not known.

Solak, 23, was selected by the Yankees in the second round of the 2016 draft. He spent last season between High-A Tampa and Double-A Trenton, hitting a combined .297/.384/.452 with 12 home runs, 53 RBI, 72 runs scored, and 14 stolen bases.

MLB Pipeline ranked Solak as the eighth-best prospect in the Yankees’ system and the fifth-best second base prospect in baseball, praising him for his ability to hit line drives as well as his speed.