Rockies send Tyler Colvin to Triple-A

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After hitting .290 with 18 home runs, 72 RBI and an .858 OPS with the Rockies in 2012, Tyler Colvin will begin this season in the minor leagues.

According to Thomas Harding of MLB.com, the Rockies announced last night that Colvin was optioned to Triple-A Colorado Springs. The surprising move clears the way for infielders Reid Brignac and Jonathan Herrera to make the Opening Day roster.

Colvin batted just .167 (8-for-48) with 14 strikeouts in 18 games during Cactus League play. While spring training statistics are generally meaningless, the Rockies clearly believe that regular at-bats in the minors will be beneficial. He doesn’t figure to stay down there for long, especially if he gets off to a hot start or the Rockies have an injury.

Colvin, 27, is under contract for $2.275 million this season.

Nate Karns underwent season-ending surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome

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MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan reports that Royals pitcher Nate Karns underwent surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome on Wednesday. He’s expected to be ready for spring training next year. Karns went on the disabled list in May with an elbow injury and didn’t make much progress.

The Royals acquired Karns from the Mariners in January in exchange for outfielder Jarrod Dyson. Over eight starts and one relief appearance, the 29-year-old right-hander compiled a 4.17 ERA and a 51/13 K/BB ratio in 45 1/3 innings.

Karns will enter his first of three years of arbitration eligibility after the season, so he’ll be under the Royals’ control through 2020.

The Reds are on pace to break their own record for home runs allowed

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The Reds got shelled by the Diamondbacks on Thursday afternoon, dropping the game 12-2. The pitching staff gave up four home runs, including two to Jake Lamb. Gregor Blanco and Ketel Marte also went yard.

That brings the Reds’ total on the season up to 166 through 95 games. That prorates to 283 over 162 games, which would shatter their own major league record for home runs allowed by a team in a season. Last year, the Reds’ pitching staff yielded 258 dingers.

After Thursday’s action, the Reds’ pitching has a major league worst 5.31 ERA, which is exactly in line with its major league worst 5.31 FIP. According to FanGraphs, the pitching staff is worth 0.2 Wins Above Replacement, which is by far the worst in baseball. The Twins’ staff is next-worst at 2.7 WAR. It’s been a rough year in Cincinnati.