ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that the Royals are expected to sign pitcher Ricky Nolasco. Given Nolasco’s age and recent performance, the deal is likely of the minor league variety. (Update: The deal has been finalized, per Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports. Nolasco will earn $1.5 million, can earn $250,000 in additional incentives, and has an opt-out date for March 24, Heyman adds.)
Nolasco, 35, posted a 4.92 ERA with a 143/58 K/BB ratio in 181 innings across 33 starts for the Angels last season. His last productive season was in 2013 when he pitched for the Marlins and Dodgers. Since 2014, Nolasco has a composite 4.99 ERA.
Nolasco will serve as rotation depth for the rebuilding Royals. The club recently placed Jesse Hahn on the 60-day disabled list with a sprained UCL and Nate Karns isn’t a guarantee to be ready by Opening Day after undergoing surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome last July.
Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner left Monday’s Cactus League game against the Athletics after he was hit by a pitch. He went for X-rays, revealing that he suffered a broken wrist, Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times reports. Shaikin adds that Turner is unlikely to return before May, noting that Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman missed six weeks with a similar injury last year and Astros outfielder George Springer missed nine weeks in 2015.
Needless to say, this is a huge loss for the Dodgers. Last year, Turner hit .322/.415/.530 with 21 home runs and 71 RBI in 543 plate appearances, helping the Dodgers reach the World Series. He made the All-Star team for the first time in his career and finished eighth in NL MVP balloting.
Thankfully, the Dodgers have some versatile players on the roster. Logan Forsythe could move from second base to third, giving Chase Utley more playing time at second. Enrique Hernandez could man the hot corner as well. Chris Taylor has played some third base, or he could shift to second base in Forsythe’s stead. The club should shed some light on how it plans to move forward following Turner’s injury.