Angel Pagan refuses surgery to heal his hamstring

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Giants outfielder Angel Pagan, on the shelf since May 26 with a strained left hamstring,was told by the team that surgery was an option, but Pagan declined, per CSN Bay Area’s Andrew Baggarly. Instead, Pagan received a platelet-rich plasma injection. He says he still feels pain, but expects to go on a rehab assignment in the near future as he works his way back into playing shape.

When Pagan was placed on the DL, he was hitting .262 with a .688 OPS and had stolen only six bases in ten attempts. In his place in center field, the Giants have been using Gregor Blanco, who has caught fire as of late. Since June 4, Blanco is hitting .406.

Joey Votto: “I tried to get fatter. I succeeded at that apparently.”

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We’ve poked fun often at the spring training trope of players showing up to camp in the “best shape of [their] life.” Reds first baseman Joey Votto has turned that entirely on its head. Talking about his offseason, the 2010 NL MVP said, “I tried to get fatter. I succeeded at that apparently. We did all the testing and I am fatter,” Zach Buchanan of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports. Votto, of course, wasn’t trying to say he’s not in shape; he was just using some of his trademark self-deprecating humor.

Votto did get serious when discussing the state of the rebuilding Reds. As Buchanan also reported, Votto said, “I think we’re starting to get to the point where people are starting to get tired of this stretch of ball. I think something needs to start changing and start going in a different direction. I’m going to do my part to help make that change.”

Votto, 34, is under contract with the Reds through at least 2023, so he still has plenty of incentive to help see the rebuild through. He has been nothing short of stellar over the last three seasons. This past season, he hit .320/.454/.578 with 36 home runs, 100 RBI, and 106 runs scored in 707 appearances across all 162 games. Votto led the majors in walks (134) and on-base percentage and led the National League in OPS (1.032).

Despite Votto’s presence, both FanGraphs and PECOTA are projecting the Reds to put up a 74-88 record. The club had a pretty quiet offseason, expecting to enter 2018 with largely the same roster as last year.