Chad Billingsley was scheduled to start for the Dodgers in Sunday afternoon’s series finale at Camden Yards. But that’s not going to happen.
Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times reports that Billingsley has been placed on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to April 16, with discomfort in his pitching elbow. Stephen Fife has been recalled from Triple-A Albuquerque in a corresponding roster move and will make the start against Baltimore.
Billingsley opted for platelet-rich plasma treatment over Tommy John surgery when he was diagnosed last year with a partially torn ulnar collateral ligament. Now he’ll probably be forced to reconsider.
The Dodgers opened the season with a surplus of starting pitching. But that surplus is gone.
Jake Arrieta‘s bat is in midseason form already. The Cubs’ ace swatted a solo home run to center field off of Zack Greinke in Thursday afternoon’s Grapefruit League exhibition game, his first homer of the spring.
The blast went 465 feet, according to MLB.com’s Daren Willman.
Arrieta has hit two home runs in each of the past two seasons. Madison Bumgarner (eight) and Noah Syndergaard (four) are the only other pitchers to match or exceed his output in that department.
Greinke, meanwhile, is hoping to bounce back after a miserable 2016 season. He finished with an uncharacteristic 4.37 ERA in 26 starts in his first year with the Diamondbacks.
Angels first baseman Luis Valbuena will miss the next four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.
Valbuena, 31, signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Angels in January and was on track to get the lion’s share of the playing time at first base. While he’s out, however, C.J. Cron will handle first base on a regular basis. When Valbeuna returns, the two will likely form a platoon.
Last year with the Astros, Valbuena hit a solid .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances.