Ron Washington: seedless

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Richard Durrett of ESPN Dallas has a scoop:  Ron Washington, a sunflower seed addict, got the monkey off his back in Game 4 and went with gum instead. Why?

Washington normally goes through two bags of sunflower seeds (usually ranch flavored). But his wife, Gerry, doesn’t like the way Washington looks on camera when he’s chewing them.  “I was getting pressure put on me,” Washington said. “She said, ‘Everybody eats seeds, but nobody looks like you.'”

Nobody really looks like Ron Washington anyway, so I suppose that’s academic.  Well, this guy does. Anyway, good luck to Washington. One day at a time, Ron. One day at a time.

Speaking of how people look on camera in these playoffs, I noticed last night that Fox is already overdosing on those hyper-closeups during critical points of the game.  I can’t say I miss that. At all. Ever. Easily the most annoying thing to ever happen to baseball broadcasts.

It’s to the point where I hope there are people in the stands who hold their hands together like they’re praying and put worried looks on their face for the explicit purpose of punking a Fox cameraman into going in tight on them only to immediately moon him or flip him the bird or something.

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.