Florida Marlins v Pittsburgh Pirates

Jose Tabata cleared to resume hitting following broken bone in hand


According to Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com, Jose Tabata was cleared to resume hitting last week after being shut down in September due to a broken bone in his left hand.

Tabata received clearance from doctors while he was in Pittsburgh for the Pirates’ caravan and PirateFest events and immediately began hitting in the indoor cage.

“I was a little nervous because I wanted to feel good,” Tabata said. “Now, I am feeling pretty good. I’m ready to roll.”

Tabata also dealt with quad and hamstring injuries this past season, batting .266/.349/.362 with four home runs, 21 RBI, 16 stolen bases and a .711 OPS over 382 plate appearances. The speedy 23-year-old agreed to a long-term contract with the Pirates in August which could keep him with the club through 2019.

The Pirates brought former All-Star Nate McLouth back on a one-year deal earlier this month, but they currently project to have Tabata, Andrew McCutchen and Alex Presley in their starting outfield next season.

Nathan Eovaldi expects to pitch out of bullpen if Yankees reach ALDS

New York Yankees starting pitcher Nathan Eovaldi delivers in the first inning of a baseball game against the Atlanta Braves, Sunday, Aug. 30, 2015, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Todd Kirkland)
AP Photo/Todd Kirkland
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Nathan Eovaldi hasn’t pitched in a month due to right elbow inflammation, but he told Chad Jennings of the Journal News today that he expects to pitch out of the bullpen if the Yankees advance to the ALDS against the Royals.

Eovaldi was originally expected to throw a 35-pitch bullpen session today, but the Yankees moved up his timetable after the news that CC Sabathia was checking into alcohol rehab. Instead, he threw 10 pitches in a bullpen session before facing hitters for the first time since his injury.

There isn’t enough time for Eovaldi to get stretched out to start during the ALDS, but he could still play an important role for the Yankees, especially with Adam Warren looking like the most likely option to replace Sabathia in the rotation.

Cardinals “optimistic” Yadier Molina will be on NLDS roster

St. Louis Cardinals' Yadier Molina celebrates as he arrives home after hitting a solo home run during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the San Francisco Giants Monday, Aug. 17, 2015, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)
AP Photo/Jeff Roberson
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Yadier Molina suffered a mild ligament tear in his left thumb on September 20, but the Cardinals announced Monday that they remain “optimistic” he’ll be on the roster for the upcoming NLDS.

Molina visited a hand specialist Monday and Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com reports that he’ll have a custom splint built in hopes that he’ll be able to hit and catch. He’s still not 100 percent, but even a limited Molina could be better than the alternative. That would be Tony Cruz in this case.

The Cardinals will meet the winner of Wednesday’s Wild Card game between the Cubs and the Pirates. Game 1 of the NLDS will take place Friday at 6:30 p.m. ET in St. Louis.