Troy Renck of the Denver Post has some details on the Rockies’ plans for Roy Oswalt after signing the 35-year-old right-hander to a minor-league deal yesterday.
According to Renck he’ll head to extended spring training and “is scheduled to make two or three starts there before probably going to Double-A Tulsa for more work.” Assuming he makes at least two starts at Double-A that would seemingly mean Oswalt is no fewer than three weeks from potentially joining the Rockies.
It’s also possible that they decide not to call him up at all, of course, but Renck notes that the Rockies were impressed by Oswalt’s recent throwing session and he’s been throwing “intense bullpen sessions” on his own to stay in shape.
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.