Mariners, Indians “emerging as favorites” for Scott Baker

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Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish reports that the Mariners and Indians are “emerging as favorites” among the 5-7 teams that have expressed serious interest in signing free agent starter Scott Baker.

Baker missed the entire 2012 season due to Tommy John reconstructive elbow surgery and made only three starts for the Cubs in 2013, but he had a 3.14 ERA and 1.17 WHIP in 2011 with the Twins and is expected to enter camp this year at full health.

Cotillo expects Baker to settle for a minor league contract. That’s a worthwhile gamble for any club.

Dodgers tab Walker Buehler to start on Monday

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The Dodgers announced that pitching prospect Walker Buehler will be called up to start on Monday against the Marlins. Rich Hill went on the 10-day disabled list with a cracked fingernail, so Buehler will serve as a fill-in while the lefty is out, likely for just one start.

Buehler, a 23-year-old right-hander, made his major league debut last September, making eight relief appearances. He struggled, yielding eight runs on 11 hits and eight walks with 12 strikeouts in 9 1/3 innings. He was off to a good start to his 2018 season at Triple-A Oklahoma City, owning a 2.08 ERA with 16 strikeouts and four walks in 13 innings.

Monday will be Buehler’s first major league start. He is the Dodgers’ No. 1 prospect and No. 12 overall in baseball according to MLB Pipeline.