For that I am quoting Rays Index, which quotes Peter Gammons on MLB Network regarding the Pirates alleged offer to the Rays for David Price:
“Most people thought the Pirates offer, which was all about prospects and minor leaguers, might have been greater in terms of talent and that the Pirates were much closer to getting Price than we realize. But the way that the Rays look at it in Franklin and in Smyly, they get two current Major League players who are under control for a long time [and] cost efficient.”
To which I say the same thing, more or less, I said about the Red Sox’ return for Jon Lester yesterday: it makes total sense if you assume, as the Rays likely assume, that they have a good chance to contend in 2015. The AL East is fluid, the Rays will be getting some of their injured starters back next year and, while keeping David Price would be both an expensive and very short term proposition for them, there is no reason for the Rays to assume the next time they reach the playoffs will be years from now. Smyly and Franklin will help next year.
Mets’ left-hander Steven Matz will miss his Grapefruit League appearance on Monday after experiencing soreness in his left elbow, according to a report by Mike Puma of the New York Post. Matz reportedly first felt discomfort in his elbow on Wednesday after pitching four innings against the Marlins, but a medical evaluation revealed no structural damage.
Still, it’s unsettling news for the 25-year-old, who is coming off of an injury-riddled 2016 season. Matz pitched to a 3.40 ERA, 2.1 BB/9 and 8.8 SO/9 during his sophomore campaign with the Mets, but his success was hampered by a bevy of shoulder and elbow issues that culminated in season-ending surgery to remove bone spurs from his left elbow.
Comments from Mets’ GM Sandy Alderson indicated that while the club doesn’t believe anything is significantly wrong with Matz’s elbow this time around, the setback could have an impact on his chances of cracking the Opening Day roster. Until he’s cleared to return to the mound, the club is expected to take a longer look at rotation candidates Robert Gsellman, Zack Wheeler and Seth Lugo.
Dodgers’ left fielder Andrew Toles crushed his first spring training home run on Saturday afternoon. With the bases loaded and a two-run deficit hanging over their heads in the fourth inning, Toles stepped up to the plate against Oakland right-hander Jesse Hahn and unloaded a grand slam on the second pitch he saw.
Third baseman Justin Turner was quick to follow up with a solo jack of his own, bringing the score to a comfortable 7-4 lead by the end of the fourth. Another three-run outburst in the fifth and an eighth-inning RBI single by Austin Barnes raised the final score to 11-6… which, coincidentally, was the same score the Reds used to defeat the Athletics’ second split-squad lineup on Saturday (albeit with a few more RBI walks than grand slams).
Toles, 24, is approaching his sophomore season with the Dodgers in 2017. He slashed .314/.365/.505 with three home runs and an .870 OPS in his first major league season in 2016 and is expected to platoon with the right-handed Franklin Gutierrez in left field this year.