The Chinese Taipei national baseball team will face a pretty decent lineup

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Not too long ago Major League Baseball announced that a team of major leaguers was going to go to Taiwan to play an all-star series against the Chinese Taipei national team in November.  They just announced the players who will be participating. Among them: Curtis Granderson, Robinson Cano, Pablo Sandoval and Miguel Cabrera.

There’s a lot of falloff after that, going down to Logan Morrison and then guys like Jeff Mathis and Erick Aybar, but it still seems like Bruce Bochy — who will manage this bunch — can put together a pretty darn good starting lineup. Pitching is way more suspect with Dillon Gee and Jeremy Guthrie vying for the title of “ace” of the staff.  Mark Melancon will be the closer.

A mixed bag to be sure, but with an offensive core like that, I presume that they’ll still thump whatever the Chinese Taipei national team will be able to muster.

Erasmo Ramirez to be shut down with a minor lat strain

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Mariners right-hander Erasmo Ramirez has been shut down for two weeks with a minor lat strain, reports Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times. It’s a precautionary move, as Ramirez felt some tightness in his arm and could not complete his scheduled bullpen session on Saturday.

There’s no word yet on whether Ramirez will be able to recover in time for the start of the season, though he’s expected to claim a rotation spot again this spring. The 28-year-old righty has been dogged by injuries throughout his six-year career, but finally managed to piece together a full season on the mound in back-to-back stints with the Rays and Mariners in 2017. He went 5-6 in 19 starts for the two clubs and turned in a cumulative 4.39 ERA, 2.1 BB/9 and 7.5 SO/9 through 131 1/3 innings.

The Mariners are no stranger to pitcher injuries, either. They lost a number of their top arms to various elbow, arm and shoulder injuries last year and cycled through 40 total pitchers as they limped toward a 78-84 finish. Comments from club manager Scott Servais indicate that the team will keep a close eye on Ramirez throughout his recovery, though Divish notes that right-hander Andrew Moore and lefty Ariel Miranda could also slot into the no. 5 spot if Ramirez experiences further setbacks.