Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia reports that Phillies starter Jerad Eickhoff will miss the next six to eight weeks with a strained right lat. Manager Gabe Kapler said the right-hander suffered the injury with one of his final pitches during his most recent Grapefruit League start.
Eickhoff, who suffered a similar injury last year, went 4-8 with a 4.71 ERA and a 118/53 K/BB ratio in 128 innings during the 2017 season.
Salisbury notes that the Phillies are likely to fill Eickhoff’s spot in the rotation internally. With free agent Alex Cobb still available, GM Matt Klentak said on Monday that the Phillies’ moves were likely complete. Following news of Eickhoff’s injury, Klentak said on Friday that the young pitchers — almost certainly referring to Ben Lively, Zach Eflin, and Mark Leiter, who are fighting for rotation spots — are stretched out and worthy of a look.
Fellow second basemen Javier Baez of the Cubs and D.J. LeMahieu of the Rockies got into a disagreement in the top of the third inning of Sunday’s game at Coors Field over sign-stealing.
LeMahieu reached on a fielder’s choice ground out, then advanced to second base on Charlie Blackmon‘s single. While Nolan Arenado and Trevor Story were batting, Baez was concerned that LeMahieu was relaying the Cubs’ signs to his teammates. Baez decided to stand in front of LeMahieu to block any information he might have been giving to Arenado and Story. LeMahieu got irritated and the two jawed at each other for a bit. Umpires Vic Carapazza and Greg Gibson had to intervene to tell Baez to knock it off.
There has always been a back-and-forth with alleged sign-stealing. As long as teams aren’t using technology to steal signs, it’s fair game for players to relay information to their teammates about the opposing team’s signs. Last year, MLB determined the Red Sox went against the rules and used technology — an Apple watch in this case — to steal signs from the Yankees. Other teams in the past have been accused of using binoculars from the bullpen to steal signs. In this particular case with Baez and LeMahieu, there was no foul play going on, just Baez trying to make the Rockies cede what he perceived to be their slight competitive advantage.
The Cubs went on to beat the Rockies 9-7 on Sunday.