Wandy Rodriguez leaves start with first-inning arm injury

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Wandy Rodriguez threw just 14 pitches and recorded just one out in today’s start against the Braves before exiting the game with what the Pirates are calling tightness in his left forearm.

Rodriguez has pitched very well since coming to the Pirates last year in a midseason trade, posting a 3.60 ERA and 96/36 K/BB ratio in 137 innings, so losing the veteran left-hander would be a big blow to a pitching staff that surprisingly ranks third in the league in ERA.

Bryan Morris replaced Rodriguez in the first inning today, but he shifted to the bullpen full time last season and the Pirates would likely look elsewhere for a rotation fill-in.

Angels hire Brad Ausmus as special assistant to the GM

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Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports that the Angels have hired former Tigers manager Brad Ausmus as a special assistant to GM Billy Eppler.

Ausmus, 48, managed the Tigers for four seasons, accruing a 314-332 (.486) record. The Tigers fired him after the 2017 season and hired former Twins manager Ron Gardenhire in his place.

Ausmus will assist with scouting and evaluations of players in the Angels’ system, amateurs, and players in other organizations.