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Indians to move Danny Salazar to the bullpen

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Danny Salazar‘s return to the Indians’ rotation lasted only one start. Paul Hoynes of the Plain Dealer reports that the club is moving Salazar to the bullpen. Manager Terry Francona plans to use him in a two- or three-inning appearance starting on Sunday.

Salazar, 27, had been on the 10-day disabled list with inflammation in his right elbow. He recorded only two outs before exiting in his start against the White Sox on Tuesday, yielding four runs on one hit and two walks with one strikeout.

On the season, Salazar owns a 4.66 ERA with a 129/40 K/BB ratio in 92 2/3 innings. The Indians are likely preparing to enter the playoffs with a rotation that doesn’t include Salazar, though things could change in the next few weeks.

Report: Orioles interested in Lance Lynn

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The Orioles singlehandedly kept the rumor mill churning this weekend. MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports that the club is interested in making a play for free agent right-hander Lance Lynn, adding him to a list of potential candidates that also includes free agent righty Alex Cobb. The two are expected to command similar contracts in free agency, but Morosi notes that the Orioles may prefer Cobb based on his familiarity with the AL East.

Lynn, 30, is two years removed from Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. Despite missing the 2016 season, he bounced back with a respectable 11-8 record in 33 starts and complemented his efforts with a 3.43 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 7.4 SO/9 over 186 1/3 innings for the 2017 Cardinals. He lost several days with a blister on his pitching hand in early September, but managed to avoid any major injuries and can reasonably be expected to shoulder another heavy workload in 2018.

Lynn may not be the Orioles’ first choice to beef up their starting rotation, but there’s no doubt that he’ll be in high demand as one of very few viable starters on the market this winter. The veteran righty rejected his one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Cardinals on Thursday and will likely be seeking a multi-year contract, one that Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch estimates around five years and $100+ million. If the Orioles are willing to bite that bullet, they’ll still need to compensate the Cardinals with their third pick in next year’s draft.