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Orioles sign Tomo Ohka to a minor league deal

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MASN’s Roch Kubatko reported on a handful of players the Orioles signed to minor league contracts on Thursday. One of them is pitcher Tomo Ohka, who hasn’t appeared in the majors since 2009 with the Indians.

Ohka, 40, reinvented himself as a knuckleballer in 2013. He hasn’t played professional baseball since 2014 when he was with the Bridgeport Bluefish of the independent league. He did play semi-pro ball in 2015 with the Toyama Thunderbirds and the Fukushima Hope.

Over parts of 10 seasons in the majors, Ohka made 178 starts and 24 relief appearances, compiling a 4.26 ERA.

Jeff Samardzija to undergo MRI on right shoulder

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Update (12:58 AM ET): Per Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle, Samardzija has been diagnosed with a strained pectoral muscle. He’ll be shut down for a week. That’s good news for the Giants, considering the alternatives.


Giants starter Jeff Samardzija will undergo an MRI on his ailing right shoulder, according to NBC Sports Bay Area. The right-hander struggled in a minor league game on Wednesday, surrendering a pair of home runs and hitting a batter. Overall this spring, Samardzija has given up 15 runs (13 earned) on 17 hits (six homers) and seven walks with seven strikeouts in 11 innings.

This may mean Samardzija won’t be ready for the start of the regular season. Derek Holland would likely replace Samardzija in the rotation. Holland had been competing for the No. 5 spot in the Giants’ rotation.

Samardzija led the National League in losses last season with 15, also posting a 4.42 ERA with a 205/32 K/BB ratio in a league-high 207 2/3 innings. Since becoming a starter, Samardzija has been able to avoid injury, making 32 or 33 starts in each of the last five seasons.