Zach Britton’s rookie campaign has taken another unfortunate turn.
According to Roch Kubato of MASNSports.com, the Orioles have placed Britton on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left shoulder. He was cleared to make room for Cesar Izturis, who is back from elbow surgery.
It’s always scary when you hear something about a pitcher’s shoulder, but hopefully this is more about fatigue and/or losing his mechanics than Britton being seriously hurt. The young left-hander has allowed 15 runs (10 earned) on 19 hits over two starts since returning from the minor leagues last Saturday.
Britton, 23, has a 4.66 ERA and 68/40 K/BB ratio over 20 starts this season. After posting an impressive 2.89 ERA through his first 10 major league starts, he has an ERA of 8.00 over his last 10 outings. Ouch.
The Phillies and Red Sox appear intent on pursuing free agent first baseman Carlos Santana, MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports. Santana rejected a one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Indians on Thursday and is expected to draw widespread interest on the market this winter. The Mets, Mariners, Angels and Indians could make a play for the infielder, though no serious offers have been made this early in the offseason.
Santana, 31, is coming off of a seven-year track with the Indians. He batted .259/.363/.455 with 23 home runs and 3.0 fWAR last season, making 2017 the fourth-most valuable year of his career to date. Although he was primarily stationed at first base over the last year, he could step back into a hybrid first base/DH role with the Red Sox, who are hurting for infield depth with Hanley Ramirez still working his way back from shoulder surgery.
As for Santana’s other suitors, the Mariners are far less likely to pursue a deal after trading for Ryon Healy last Wednesday. Neither the Mets nor the Phillies have a DH spot to offer the veteran infielder, and the Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins appears to be blocking the way at first base. Then again, Santana may not find a more enticing offer outside of Cleveland, where Edwin Encarnacion might otherwise be the club’s best option at first base. During the GM meetings, Indians’ GM Mike Chernoff said he “love to have both [Santana and Jay Bruce] back” in 2018, but hasn’t backed up that love with any contract talks just yet.