george kottaras royals

Indians designate George Kottaras for assignment

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Cleveland picked up outfielder Chris Dickerson from Pittsburgh to help fill in for injured center fielder Michael Bourn and to make room for him on the roster the Indians designated catcher George Kottaras for assignment.

Kottaras has bounced around a ton over the years and the Indians signed the 31-year-old after he was released by the Cubs during spring training.

When given an extended opportunity for playing time he’s generally produced well for a catcher thanks to good power and plate discipline, posting a .741 OPS in 305 career games, but Kottaras’ batting averages are usually ugly and he always struggles to throw out a decent percentage of steal attempts.

Yan Gomes started 71 of the Indians’ first 87 games behind the plate, including 31 of the past 36 games, and it’s possible the Indians feel comfortable using Carlos Santana at catcher again if needed.

Red Sox ask Hanley Ramirez to report 15-20 pounds lighter next spring

Hanley Ramirez
The Associated Press
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Hanley Ramirez was a complete failure in left field this season in Boston and he batted just .249/.291/.426 while appearing in only 105 games. Ben Cherington, the man that signed him to a four-year, $88 million free agent contract, is no longer with the Red Sox. It’s time for some tough love …

Red Sox interim manager Torey Lovullo, who just inked a two-year extension to return as John Farrell’s bench coach, told Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald on Sunday that Hanley has been asked to drop 15-20 pounds over the offseason. There have been similar conversations with Boston’s other free agent failure, Pablo Sandoval.

Ramirez is expected to start at first base for the Red Sox in 2016.

Video: Clayton Kershaw notches his 300th strikeout

Clayton Kershaw
AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill
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Clayton Kershaw entered Sunday’s regular-season finale against the Padres needing six strikeouts to become the first pitcher in 13 years to whiff 300 batters in a single season.

He did it within the first nine batters of the game, whiffing Yangervis Solarte, Clint Barmes, Austin Hedges, and Travis Jankowski once each and Melvin Upton Jr. on two different occasions.

Here was the milestone matchup against Upton Jr. with two outs in the top of the third …

The last pitchers to reach 300 strikeouts in a season were Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling. They did so as teammates on the 2002 Diamondbacks.

Kershaw is lined up to face the Mets in Game 1 of the NLDS.