Mike Napoli AP

Mike Napoli not close to returning from disabled list


Mike Napoli wasn’t ready to come off the disabled list when eligible earlier this week and it sounds like the Rangers catcher isn’t close to returning from a quadriceps injury.

In fact, according to T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com the Rangers “are coming to grips with the possibility that Napoli won’t be ready to come off the disabled list this week and that it could be well into September before he is back.”

That certainly makes the decision to acquire Geovany Soto from the Cubs and cut Yorvit Torrealba loose a much more important pair of moves than the swap of backup catchers that it appeared to be at the time.

Soto has been thrust into the starting job while hitting just .247 with a .674 OPS in 21 games for the Rangers, which actually represents an improvement over his numbers for the Cubs.

Red Sox ask Hanley Ramirez to report 15-20 pounds lighter next spring

Hanley Ramirez
The Associated Press
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Hanley Ramirez was a complete failure in left field this season in Boston and he batted just .249/.291/.426 while appearing in only 105 games. Ben Cherington, the man that signed him to a four-year, $88 million free agent contract, is no longer with the Red Sox. It’s time for some tough love …

Red Sox interim manager Torey Lovullo, who just inked a two-year extension to return as John Farrell’s bench coach, told Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald on Sunday that Hanley has been asked to drop 15-20 pounds over the offseason. There have been similar conversations with Boston’s other free agent failure, Pablo Sandoval.

Ramirez is expected to start at first base for the Red Sox in 2016.

Video: Clayton Kershaw notches his 300th strikeout

Clayton Kershaw
AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill
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Clayton Kershaw entered Sunday’s regular-season finale against the Padres needing six strikeouts to become the first pitcher in 13 years to whiff 300 batters in a single season.

He did it within the first nine batters of the game, whiffing Yangervis Solarte, Clint Barmes, Austin Hedges, and Travis Jankowski once each and Melvin Upton Jr. on two different occasions.

Here was the milestone matchup against Upton Jr. with two outs in the top of the third …

The last pitchers to reach 300 strikeouts in a season were Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling. They did so as teammates on the 2002 Diamondbacks.

Kershaw is lined up to face the Mets in Game 1 of the NLDS.