Just got the press release from MLB about the new ESPN rights deal. It’s mostly as reported this morning. This stood out, however:
ESPN has also made a commitment to showcase each of the 30 MLB Clubs at least once per season in a live game telecast.
This is at least a bone to fans of teams who don’t play for one of the big boys. Of course, I presume that fans of those teams will get to see their guys playing one of the big boys in one of these guaranteed games.
Not that there’s anything wrong with that. Ratings are what pay for these deals, and way more people will watch the Yankees play the Royals than will watch the Rays play the Royals.
Update (12:58 AM ET): Per Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle, Samardzija has been diagnosed with a strained pectoral muscle. He’ll be shut down for a week. That’s good news for the Giants, considering the alternatives.
Giants starter Jeff Samardzija will undergo an MRI on his ailing right shoulder, according to NBC Sports Bay Area. The right-hander struggled in a minor league game on Wednesday, surrendering a pair of home runs and hitting a batter. Overall this spring, Samardzija has given up 15 runs (13 earned) on 17 hits (six homers) and seven walks with seven strikeouts in 11 innings.
This may mean Samardzija won’t be ready for the start of the regular season. Derek Holland would likely replace Samardzija in the rotation. Holland had been competing for the No. 5 spot in the Giants’ rotation.
Samardzija led the National League in losses last season with 15, also posting a 4.42 ERA with a 205/32 K/BB ratio in a league-high 207 2/3 innings. Since becoming a starter, Samardzija has been able to avoid injury, making 32 or 33 starts in each of the last five seasons.