Jorge De La Rosa cleared to begin throwing off mound

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Rockies left-hander Jorge De La Rosa underwent Tommy John reconstructive elbow surgery last June and wound up making only 10 starts during the 2011 season. He should be much more active in 2012.

According to Troy Renck of the Denver Post, De La Rosa has been cleared to begin throwing off a mound regularly and is currently well ahead of schedule in his recovery from the major elbow procedure.

Here’s the 30-year-old southpaw himself:

“They have told me to take my time, that they aren’t going to rush me,” said De La Rosa. “But I believe I can be back in the big leagues in May.”

De La Rosa agreed to a two-year, $21.5 million contract with the Rockies in November of 2010.

Padres sign Jordan Lyles

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The Padres announced on Sunday that the club signed pitcher Jordan Lyles to a one-year major league contract with a club option for 2019. According to Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports, Lyles will earn $750,000 in 2018. Pitcher Travis Wood was designated for assignment to create room on the 40-man roster for Lyles.

Lyles, 27, had miserable results between the Rockies and Padres last season, compiling an aggregate 7.75 ERA with a 55/22 K/BB ratio over 69 2/3 innings. While he specifically gave up 24 earned runs in 23 innings across five starts with the Padres, it was a small sample. A full season at the pitcher-friendly Petco Park, as opposed to Colorado’s Coors Field, might help revitalize his career.

Wood, 30, went to the Padres at the non-waiver trade deadline from the Royals this past season. Overall, the lefty posted an aggregate 6.80 ERA with a 65/45 K/BB ratio in 94 innings. He’ll earn $6.5 million this season and has an $8 million mutual option with a $1 million buyout for 2019. So, the Padres are just eating $7.5 million minus the league minimum, assuming Wood latches on elsewhere.