On Saturday at Citizens Bank Park, the Phillies had their annual Alumni Night, bringing back many of the organization’s heralded players. They specifically saluted the 1993 NL Champion team this evening. Both events were more emotional than usual because former catcher Darren “Dutch” Daulton, a key component of that ’93 team, recently underwent surgery to remove brain tumors.
CSN Philly is reporting that another member of the ’93 team, catcher Todd Pratt, has also been battling cancer.
Pratt told Comcast SportsNet’s Leslie Gudel he discovered a lump while shaving around the time of last year’s Alumni Weekend and was later diagnosed with head and neck cancer.
“I went through treatment this last spring and it was the toughest thing in my life I’ve ever been through,” he said. “It was really some trial and tribulation there.
“Everything’s great now, and it was actually a blessing. I got in great shape and my blood pressure is down and I’m a healthy guy again.
“I have a good story, and I really shared that with Dutch the last couple days.”
Pratt spent eight seasons with the Phillies and five with the Mets. Though he was not on the roster when the Phillies faced the Blue Jays in the 1993 World Series, he reached the World Series in 2000 with the Mets.
We learned on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu won one of the final two spots in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Brandon McCarthy has won the other, Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register reports. Alex Wood was McCarthy’s competitor for the spot.
McCarthy, 33, posted a 4.85 ERA across four appearances spanning 13 innings this spring, yielding seven earned runs on 14 hits and a walk with seven strikeouts. Wood, a southpaw, gave up five earned runs in six innings against the Reds on Tuesday, which might have factored into the decision.
Last season, McCarthy made nine starts and one relief appearance, posting a 4.95 ERA with a 44/26 K/BB ratio in 40 innings. In the event McCarthy falters, the club has Wood as well as Julio Urias and the injured Scott Kazmir as potential replacements.
The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.
Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.
Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.