If the Sox decide to shop relief pitchers, the Dodgers are interested

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Ken Rosenthal reports that the Dodgers would be interested in a handful of Red Sox relievers should they be made available, including Koji Uehara, Andrew Miller, Burke Badenhop and Craig Breslow.

Not surprising, as the Dodgers have one of the worst bullpens — at least by ERA — so far this season. Relief pitching tends to be the most commonly traded and most commonly sought-after commodity at the deadline, of course, so it’s not like they’ll have the field to themselves. The Tigers, Blue Jays, Angels, Reds and Braves are just some of the many contenders looking to shore up their relief corps this summer.

As for Boston: while trading John Lackey may not seem like a wise idea given that there is every reason to think Boston will contend next year, Uehara, Miller and Badenhop are all potential free agents. And bullpens are a lot easier to rebuild in relatively short order than starting rotations. Dealing one or more of them may be a way for the Sox to turn a lemon of a season into lemonade.

 

Video: Jake Arrieta hits a 465-foot home run off of Zack Greinke

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Jake Arrieta‘s bat is in midseason form already. The Cubs’ ace swatted a solo home run to center field off of Zack Greinke in Thursday afternoon’s Grapefruit League exhibition game, his first homer of the spring.

The blast went 465 feet, according to MLB.com’s Daren Willman.

Arrieta has hit two home runs in each of the past two seasons. Madison Bumgarner (eight) and Noah Syndergaard (four) are the only other pitchers to match or exceed his output in that department.

Greinke, meanwhile, is hoping to bounce back after a miserable 2016 season. He finished with an uncharacteristic 4.37 ERA in 26 starts in his first year with the Diamondbacks.

Luis Valbuena to miss four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring

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Angels first baseman Luis Valbuena will miss the next four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.

Valbuena, 31, signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Angels in January and was on track to get the lion’s share of the playing time at first base. While he’s out, however, C.J. Cron will handle first base on a regular basis. When Valbeuna returns, the two will likely form a platoon.

Last year with the Astros, Valbuena hit a solid .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances.