Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Cole Hamels delivers a pitch to the Los Angeles Dodgers during the first inning of their National League MLB baseball game in Philadelphia

Cole Hamels undergoes precautionary MRI on left shoulder

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Cole Hamels blamed his poor performance Friday on a dead arm, but the Phillies aren’t taking any chances with their prized left-hander.

According to Leslie Gudel of CSNPhilly.com, the Phillies sent Hamels for a precautionary MRI on his left shoulder today. The results aren’t yet available.

Hamels gave up three runs on six hits and four walks over five innings against the Nationals on Friday while showing diminished velocity. While he told reporters following the game that he didn’t feel any pain, Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said the left-hander experienced some stiffness in his shoulder.

The Phillies were rained out yesterday and have an off-day tonight, so they could push Hamels back in the rotation even if the MRI doesn’t reveal anything serious.

Hamels, 27, is 13-7 with a 2.62 ERA and 155/35 K/BB ratio over 25 starts this season. He ranks third in the National League with 172 innings pitched.

Edinson Volquez’s brother was stabbed to death in the Dominican Republic

CLEVELAND, OH - SEPTEMBER 20: Starting pitcher Edinson Volquez #36 of the Kansas City Royals pitches during the first inning against the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field on September 20, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
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Horrible news for Marlins stater Edinson Volquez: Jorge L. Ortiz of USA Today reports that his younger brother has been stabbed to death in the Dominican Republic.

Brandy Volquez was just 25. He was involved in an early-morning fight on Monday with two men at a barbershop in Santo Domingo. One man is in police custody. Volquez, you may recall, lost his father mere hours before starting Game 1 of the 2015 World Series, so he is no stranger to tragedy, unfortunately.

“I will always remember you my brother. May God have you in his kingdom,” Volquez wrote in an Instagram post. “RIP one love.”

Diamondbacks sign Gregor Blanco

Gregor Blanco
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The Arizona Diamondbacks have signed outfielder Gregor Blanco to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

Blanco hit a mere .224/.309/.311 in 106 games with the Giants in 2006. It was his worst campaign in his big league career, not counting a 24-game stint with the Braves in 2009. Blanco suffered at least one concussion in 2015 and was on the DL for concussion issues twice that season. There’s no telling if that had anything to do with his subpar year, however.

He’ll fight for a backup job for Arizona, who already has A.J. Pollock, David Peralta and Yasmany Tomas in the outfield.