Jon Heyman reports that Casey Kotchman is going to sign with the Indians. According to Paul Hoynes, it’s a one year deal for $3 million plus incentives.
Earlier this week he was rumored to be going to the Orioles, but that apparently went nowhere.
Kotchman had a nice 2011 with the Rays, hitting .306/.378/.422 in 563 plate appearances. For his career he’s a .268/.336/.398 guy, and it’s not exactly realistic to expect him to repeat his 2011.
He plays slick defense at first base and is an upgrade over Matt LaPorta. It suggests, however, that Carlos Santana’s time at first base will be reduced as well. Whether that is just for next year or for the long haul is an open question.
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.
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.