UPDATE: Roch Kubatko of MASNSports.com reports that the Phillies have faxed Blanton’s medical records to the Orioles. No word if an agreement is actually in place, though.
12:02 PM ET: CBS Sports’ Danny Knobler reports that the Orioles have talked to the Phillies about Joe Blanton.
No sense whether anything is imminent, but the interest makes sense given that the Orioles’ biggest problem is starting pitching. Blanton isn’t sexy — to most people anyway; some people are into guys like him — but he is solid enough, especially compared to what the Orioles are currently sporting rotation-wise.
Blanton is 8-9 with a 4.59 ERA. He has given up a lot of homers this year, but he doesn’t walk a lot of dudes and has a WHIP of 1.193 which is better than everyone in the O’s rotation.
Royals’ Opening Day starter Danny Duffy weathered a minor scare during Saturday’s Cactus League game against the Diamondbacks. The left-hander was removed from his final spring training start after experiencing some left shoulder tightness in the second and third innings. No lasting damage appears to have been done — Duffy told reporters that he simply felt a slight ache, nothing more — and it looks like he’ll remain on track to open the season with the team next Thursday.
The 29-year-old southpaw is coming off one of his best performances to date. Despite losing a few weeks to an oblique strain and elbow soreness, he went 9-10 in 24 starts and finished the 2017 season with a 3.81 ERA, 2.5 BB/9 and 8.0 SO/9 over 146 1/3 innings. While Duffy entered camp with a clean bill of health, he struggled to execute against his spring training opponents and racked up 13 runs, four homers, seven walks and 11 strikeouts in 13 innings of Cactus League play.
The Royals are scheduled to kick off their home opener against the White Sox on Thursday, March 29 at 4:15 PM ET. Barring any further complications with his shoulder, Duffy will take the mound for the Royals, while James Shields is expected to make his first Opening Day appearance for the White Sox.