Joe Kelly is not close to rejoining the Cardinals

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Cardinals right-hander Joe Kelly has been on the disabled list since mid-April with a hamstring injury and it sounds like he’s not close to rejoining the rotation.

Rick Hummel of the St. Louis Post Dispatch reports that Kelly hasn’t been cleared to throw a bullpen session or do any running following a “flareup” 10 days ago. Kelly told Hummel that he’s trying to be cautious in order to avoid aggravating the hamstring injury again and “be out the rest of the year.”

Triple-A call-up Tyler Lyons was doing relatively well stepping into the rotation in place of Kelly until Monday, when he allowed nine runs against the Cubs to send his ERA from 3.43 to 6.12. Based on Kelly’s status Lyons seems likely to hang onto a starting gig until at least mid-June.

UPDATE: So much for that. Now Lyons is injured too.

Report: Red Sox, J.D. Martinez close to a deal

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Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that the Red Sox and outfielder J.D. Martinez are close to a deal. He takes care to note that the deal is not done yet and the details are not known yet.

Martinez, 30, entered the offseason as the top free agent hitter. Last season, between the Tigers and Diamondbacks, he hit a lusty .303/.376/.690 with 45 home runs and 104 RBI in 489 plate appearances. He missed the first 33 games of the season with a sprained right foot; one wonders what his numbers might’ve been like if he hadn’t been injured.

The Red Sox were the team most strongly linked to Martinez throughout the offseason, despite the relatively slow-moving market. Martinez said he wants to play in the outfield and the Red Sox are currently spoken for at all three positions with Andrew Benintendi, Jackie Bradley, and Mookie Betts. Hanley Ramirez is also penciled in at DH. Should the Martinez deal become official, the Red Sox may try to trade Bradley and move Benintendi to center field. If Martinez is willing to concede his outfield wishes, the Red Sox could slot him in at DH and move Ramirez to first base.

The AL East is shaping up to be a familiar two-horse race between the Red Sox and Yankees. The addition of Martinez, in a way, answers the Yankees’ addition of Giancarlo Stanton.