George Springer suffers setback in rehab game

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Astros outfielder George Springer was expected to be activated off the 15-day disabled list before the weekend, but that is not going to happen now.

According to beat reporter Evan Drellich of the Houston Chronicle, Springer aggravated his strained left quadriceps muscle while playing in what was supposed to be his final minor league rehab game Wednesday night at Low-A Quad Cities. Springer is headed to Houston to visit with Astros team doctors and the 24-year-old former first-round pick could now remain sidelined through the middle part of August. He landed on the disabled list July 23.

Springer was sporting an .804 OPS, 20 home runs, and 51 RBI through his first 78 major league games.

Phillies, Red Sox interested in Carlos Santana

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The Phillies and Red Sox appear intent on pursuing free agent first baseman Carlos Santana, MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports. Santana rejected a one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Indians on Thursday and is expected to draw widespread interest on the market this winter. The Mets, Mariners, Angels and Indians could make a play for the infielder, though no serious offers have been made this early in the offseason.

Santana, 31, is coming off of a seven-year track with the Indians. He batted .259/.363/.455 with 23 home runs and 3.0 fWAR last season, making 2017 the fourth-most valuable year of his career to date. Although he was primarily stationed at first base over the last year, he could step back into a hybrid first base/DH role with the Red Sox, who are hurting for infield depth with Hanley Ramirez still working his way back from shoulder surgery.

As for Santana’s other suitors, the Mariners are far less likely to pursue a deal after trading for Ryon Healy last Wednesday. Neither the Mets nor the Phillies have a DH spot to offer the veteran infielder, and the Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins appears to be blocking the way at first base. Then again, Santana may not find a more enticing offer outside of Cleveland, where Edwin Encarnacion might otherwise be the club’s best option at first base. During the GM meetings, Indians’ GM Mike Chernoff said he “love to have both [Santana and Jay Bruce] back” in 2018, but hasn’t backed up that love with any contract talks just yet.