Shocker: Tony La Russa interested in a lefty reliever

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Tony La Russa suggested to MLB.com that the Cardinals may be interested in Arthur Rhodes, who was just DFA’d by the Rangers.  His comment:

“He’s been a hell of a pro for a long, long time,” La Russa said. “He’s got all our respect. Does that sound like intrigued?”

Word on the street is that La Russa’s interest in Rhodes only bloomed when someone told him that Tony Fossas turns 54-years-old next month.  No word, however, on whether La Russa would actually use Rhodes to pitch or if he just wants him around in case he wants to throw the ball at someone’s back.

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.