Matt Kemp described his injured hamstring as being 85 percent healed and told Ken Gurnick of MLB.com that he expects to return from the disabled list when eligible on May 29.
Before that happens he’ll need to avoid a setback while on a brief minor-league rehab assignment, which likely won’t begin until next weekend. And if all goes well he’d be back in the Dodgers’ lineup next Tuesday against the Brewers at Dodger Stadium.
So far the Dodgers have gone 6-2 without Kemp, which is remarkable considering how much of their offense came from the slugging center fielder before the injury. Also remarkable is that Kemp hasn’t played since May 13 and yet still ranks second in homers, third in runs, and fifth in total bases among all NL hitters despite missing 20 percent of the season.
Per Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, the Padres have announced that interim manager Pat Murphy won’t return as the team’s manager in 2016. Haudricourt adds that Brewres manager Craig Counsell tried to get Murphy on his staff, and says to look for Murphy to join the Brewers for the 2016 season.
Murphy led the Padres to a 42-53 record after Bud Black was fired in June. He had previously managed for two years with Single-A Eugene in 2011-12, and at Triple-A Tucson and El Paso in 2013-14.
Former major leaguer Phil Nevin is a candidate for the Padres’ vacant managing position, according to Scott Miller of Bleacher Report.
With a 6-1 win over the Twins in Sunday’s season finale, the Royals clinched the best record in the American League, which nets them home field advantage in the ALDS and ALCS. The Royals stand at 95-67 while the Blue Jays, who lost on Sunday, finish at 93-69.
95-67 is the Royals’ best record since finishing 97-65 in 1980, when they lost the World Series to the Phillies. Their division title is their first since 1985.
In the ALDS, which starts on Thursday, the Royals will host the winner of the AL Wild Card game between the Astros and Yankees. They are looking to avenge last year’s World Series loss, in seven games, to the Giants. The Blue Jays will host the Rangers in the other ALDS series.