Angels “hot” on free agent reliever Ryan Madson

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It sounds like Ryan Madson will soon have a team.

According to Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com, “things are hot” between the Angels and the free agent reliever, who is expected to be recovered from Tommy John reconstructive elbow surgery by the beginning of the 2013 regular season. The Phillies had been talking to Madson about a reunion, but Anaheim is apparently willing to pay much more.

Madson missed the entire 2012 season, but he had a 2.37 ERA in 60 2/3 innings with Philadelphia in 2011 while converting 32-of-34 save opportunities. The 32-year-old right-hander owns a 3.59 career ERA.

Cincinnati paid Madson an $8.5 million salary this summer as part of a one-year agreement.

Will Middlebrooks carted off field with injury

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Phillies third baseman Will Middlebrooks suffered a serious injury during Saturday’s Grapefruit League contest against the Orioles. The infielder was chasing down a pop fly in the eighth inning when he ran into left fielder Andrew Pullin, who inadvertently trapped Middlebrooks’ ankle under his leg. Middlebrooks was unable to put weight on his leg following the collision and was carted off the field and taken to a local hospital for X-rays.

Per MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki, not much is known yet about the severity of the ankle injury or the recovery time it will require, though it appears serious enough to set Middlebrooks back considerably as he seeks a backup/bench role with the team this spring.

The 29-year-old is currently seeking another opportunity to extend his six-year major-league career in 2018. He’s coming off of two down years with the Brewers and Rangers, during which he slashed a cumulative .169/.229/.262 with four extra bases through 70 plate appearances.