Rays promote stud pitching prospect Matt Moore to Triple-A

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Tampa Bay has promoted Matt Moore to Triple-A, putting the stud prospect one step from the majors at age 22.

Moore, who ranked 15th on Baseball America‘s preseason list of the MLB’s top prospects and moved up to the No. 3 spot on their midseason revision, had a 2.20 ERA and 131/28 K/BB ratio in 102 innings at Double-A, leading the Southern League in opponents’ batting average (.187) and strikeouts.

For his career Moore has a 2.79 ERA and 621 strikeouts in 445 innings and adding the left-hander to a rotation that already includes David Price, James Shields, and Jeremy Hellickson is a scary thought and one reason why the Rays are going to be winning 90-plus games a year for a long time. It’s possible Moore will get a cup of coffee in the majors this September, but his true estimated time of arrival is probably mid-2012.

Orioles acquire Alec Asher from the Phillies

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The Phillies announced on Tuesday that the club traded pitcher Alec Asher to the Orioles for a player to be named later.

Asher, 25, was the victim of a roster crunch. He was not going to make the 25-man roster and the starting rotation at Triple-A Lehigh Valley was already full. The Phillies acquired him from the Rangers in the July 2015 Cole Hamels trade.

Asher had good results in 27 2/3 innings in the big leagues last year, posting a 2.28 ERA with a 13/4 K/BB ratio. While it didn’t show in those stats, the right-hander sometimes struggles with command and he doesn’t miss bats often enough to make up for it. The Orioles, however, are happy to add some pitching depth.

Ervin Santana gets Opening Day nod from Twins again

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Ervin Santana will once again start on Opening Day for the Twins, MLB.com’s Rhett Bollinger reports. He’ll face the Royals at home in a day game on Monday, April 3.

The last pitcher to start back-to-back Opening Days for the Twins was Carl Pavano in 2011-12.

Santana, 34, is entering the third year of a four-year, $55 million contract signed in December 2014. Last season, the right-hander finished with a solid 3.38 ERA and a 149/53 K/BB ratio over 181 1/3 innings.