That Atlanta Braves have signed Ezequiel Carrera to a minor league deal.
Carrera, 30, was just let go by the Blue Jays, for whom he played the past three seasons. In 2017 he hit .282/.356/.408 with eight homers and ten stolen bases. He’ll be competing for the left field job and/or a bench spot.
Whoever wins that left field spot, of course, will likely only be keeping it warm until top prospect Ronald Acuna is called up after a stint in the minors during which he’ll have his service time manip–, er, I mean, during which time he’ll work on his defense or whatever it is the Braves say he needs to work on.
Royals’ Opening Day starter Danny Duffy weathered a minor scare during Saturday’s Cactus League game against the Diamondbacks. The left-hander was removed from his final spring training start after experiencing some left shoulder tightness in the second and third innings. No lasting damage appears to have been done — Duffy told reporters that he simply felt a slight ache, nothing more — and it looks like he’ll remain on track to open the season with the team next Thursday.
The 29-year-old southpaw is coming off one of his best performances to date. Despite losing a few weeks to an oblique strain and elbow soreness, he went 9-10 in 24 starts and finished the 2017 season with a 3.81 ERA, 2.5 BB/9 and 8.0 SO/9 over 146 1/3 innings. While Duffy entered camp with a clean bill of health, he struggled to execute against his spring training opponents and racked up 13 runs, four homers, seven walks and 11 strikeouts in 13 innings of Cactus League play.
The Royals are scheduled to kick off their home opener against the White Sox on Thursday, March 29 at 4:15 PM ET. Barring any further complications with his shoulder, Duffy will take the mound for the Royals, while James Shields is expected to make his first Opening Day appearance for the White Sox.