Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times is reporting that Angels manager Mike Scioscia is contemplating going to a three-man rotation in the American League Division Series. That would obviously include Jered Weaver, C.J. Wilson, and Matt Shoemaker (assuming he returns as expected from a mild oblique injury).
The Halos’ rotation beyond those three isn’t terribly appetizing. For the fourth spot, Scioscia would be choosing between Hector Santiago and Wade LeBlanc. Though Santiago has posted a 3.55 ERA, he has barely averaged five innings per start. LeBlanc pitched well against the Mariners yesterday, but it was only his second start of the season.
Scioscia is just thinking about the idea now; nothing is set in stone. It wouldn’t be surprising to see him go through with it, though.
Last Thursday, we learned that the MLBPA was challenging the Nippon Professional Baseball posting system, delaying Japanese superstar Shohei Ohtani’s move to Major League Baseball. The latest collective bargaining agreement removed a lot of the incentive for players to come to the U.S. by capping pay. Ohtani, for example, can only receive a signing bonus between $300,000 and $3.53 million while his team — the Nippon Ham Fighters — would receive $20 million for posting him.
Jon Morosi reports that the deadline for this issue to be resolved is 8 PM ET on Monday evening. He notes that key NPB officials have worked through the night in Japan to try to reach a resolution. It is possible that even if no agreement is reached, the deadline could be pushed further back.
Ohtani, 23, has become a heralded hitter and pitcher in Japan. At the plate over his five-year career, he has compiled a .286/.358/.500 triple-slash line with 48 home runs and 166 RBI in 1,170 plate appearances. On the mound, he has a 2.52 ERA with a 624/200 K/BB ratio across 543 innings.