Padres, Rangers interested in Rick Porcello

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According to Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports, the Padres and Rangers are the “most active” among teams interested in trading for Tigers’ right-hander Rick Porcello.

I suppose this should make Morosi happy. At least if that activity is exuberant and celebratory. We need far more of that kind of joyous intensity in our trade rumors, guys.

Anyway: R&M report that the Padres made an “aggressive offer” last week, but were turned down. Which is good because if you give in to bullies you only embolden them.

Alright, enough of that nonsense. Go read their report which handicaps the Porcello derby and talks about the sort of return the Tigers are looking for.

My view: I can’t remember the last time a team in serious contention had enough pitching. Heck, even the Reds last year, who had a recent day-historic run of rotation health and stability, found themselves a starter down due to one fluke of bad health in the playoffs.  If I’m the Tigers I keep Porcello, put Drew Smyly down in Toledo and see where things stand in June.  If, in the likely event other holes are found on the team, Porcello could be traded to patch them. As of now: they really don’t what they’ll need over the course of the season.

Report: Shohei Ohtani has sprained UCL in pitching elbow

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The Angels signed Japanese superstar Shohei Ohtani for a $2.3 million signing bonus last weekend. They may have damaged goods on their hands. Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports reports that Ohtani underwent a physical that revealed a first-degree sprain of his ulnar collateral ligament. As a result, he got a platelet-rich plasma injection on October 20. This was made known to teams after Ohtani entered MLB’s posting system, so it wasn’t like the Angels went into this blind.

Ohtani’s report said, “Although partial damage of UCL in deep layer of his right UCL exists, he is able to continue full baseball participation with sufficient elbow care program.” It also said Ohtani “will most likely be available to start his throwing program approximately a month from the PRP.”

Passan notes that the report also mentioned that a “small free body” floats in Ohtani’s elbow near his UCL.

Ohtani isn’t without other injuries. He battled hamstring and ankle issues throughout 2017 and underwent right ankle surgery back in October. Thankfully for the Angels, this diagnosis is about as good as it could be considering the circumstances. However, if Ohtani does exacerbate his UCL issue, he may ultimately need Tommy John surgery at some point, which would take him out of action for at least a year.