Rockies demote Drew Pomeranz to Triple-A

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Drew Pomeranz was the prospect centerpiece of the Ubaldo Jimenez trade in mid-2011 and started 22 games for Colorado last season, but the Rockies demoted the left-hander to Triple-A.

Pomeranz had an ugly 2-9 record last season as a 23-year-old rookie, but his 4.93 ERA was right around average for someone calling Coors Field home and of the nine pitchers to start at least 10 games for the Rockies only Jhoulys Chacin (4.48) had a lower ERA. And Chacin is now the Opening Day starter.

Pomeranz was very good at Triple-A last season with a 2.51 ERA and 46/20 K/BB ratio in 47 innings, but senior vice president of major league operations Bill Geivett told John Schlegel of MLB.com that the former No. 5 overall pick is going back down to work on his off-speed stuff:

Where he’s at right now, he’s an attacking fastball guy but with limited use of his secondary pitches. We’ve got to get that back in order so he can handle a game plan and handle a lineup and do the type of things that I think are not that far away.

Given the state of the Rockies’ rotation right now Pomeranz could be back in a hurry.

Royals closer Kelvin Herrera leaves with forearm tightness

Associated Press
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The Royals are a game and a half out of the crazy AL Wild Card race — six games back of the Indians in the division — so they don’t have a huge margin for error. They got some bad news last night, though, that could have a major impact on their playoff hopes: closer Kelvin Herrera experienced tightness in his right forearm in the ninth inning of last night’s win, forcing him out of the game.

Herrera walked the bases loaded, then went to a 2-0 count on the next batter before leaving the game. That last pitch was a fastball that clocked in at 91 m.p.h., which is NOT a typical Kelvin Herrera fastball.  Herrera didn’t talk after the game but his teammate Sal Perez said that Herrera told him  “I’m tight. I don’t feel my forearm.”

Reporters left the clubhouse before an official diagnosis or prognosis could be delivered, so expect an update some time today. If Herrera is out the closer duties could fall to Scott Alexander or Brandon Maurer.

Albert Pujols sets the all-time record for home runs by a foreign-born player

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Albert Pujols had a big night last night, driving in four runs as the Angels beat the Rangers 10-1. Three of those runs came on a three-run homer. That was the 610th home run of Pujols’ career, snapping a tie for eighth on the all-time list with Sammy Sosa. It also made him baseball’s all-time leader for home runs by a player born outside the U.S.

Pujols was aware of the accomplishment, of course, and noted how honored he was after the game:

”It’s pretty special. Obviously, all the great players from the Dominican Republic, Latin America, Venezuela, Mexico, Colombia, they’ve gone through the big leagues and to be able to accomplish something like this is very humbling.”

After Sosa, who is from the Dominican Republic, comes Rafael Palmeiro (569); Manny Ramirez (555); David Ortiz (541); Carlos Delgado (473); Jose Canseco (462); Adrian Beltre and Miguel Cabrera (459).