Craig Calcaterra

Blogger at NBC Sport.com's HardballTalk. Recovering litigator. Rake. Scoundrel. Notorious Man-About-Town.
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Nationals to designate Jacob Turner for assignment to make room for Edwin Jackson

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Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post reports that the Washington Nationals will designate pitcher Jacob Turner for assignment today. They’ll make the move so they can call up Edwin Jackson who will start today against the Angels.

Turner has pitched in 18 games, starting two, and has a 5.08 ERA. The Nationals were his fifth major league stop in six seasons. Where he stops next, no one knows.

Jackson, of course, knows that well. He’s pitched for 12 different teams in 15 years. This will be his second go-around with the Nats, having last pitched for them in 2012. Since they signed him to a minor league deal last month, Jackson has allowed just one run on nine hits and 10 walks with 22 strikeouts in 20.1 innings with Syracuse.

Starling Marte to be activated today after PED suspension

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Pirates outfielder Starling Marte will return from his 80-game PED suspension today. Yesterday he faced the press. He apologized for letting his team and the fans down, bus still says that he isn’t sure what substance got him suspended.

He tested poisitive for Nandrolone, but claims he did not inject himself with the steroid. He says that it was a matter of “not being careful enough,” in monitoring what he took while at home in the Dominican Republic in the offseason. He said, however, that he “respects” and “understands” whatever guff he takes from his teammates, the fans or the press.

The Pirates went 39-41 during Marte’s absence and are 45-48 overall. They’ve surged of late and, thanks to a lackluster NL Central this season, are nominally in contention, six games back of the Brewers. Marte was hitting .241 with two homers and seven RBIs in 13 games when he was suspended. He hit .304 with a home run and three RBIs in 12 minor league rehab starts. Marte had taken over in center field, moving Andrew McCutchen to left, but McCutchen has returned to center in Marte’s absence. He will remain there and Marte will play in left.

Dodgers trying to sell naming rights to field at Dodger Stadium

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There aren’t many non-corporate named stadiums in Major League Baseball anymore. And some of them — Marlins Park and Nationals Park spring to mind — are only team-named because they have yet to be able to sell the rights. One suspects that Yankee Stadium will always be Yankee Stadium and that Fenway Park and Wrigley Field, though originally commercially-based appellations, will retain their traditional names.

Dodger Stadium is another one which has always been named after the team, but that will be eroded somewhat if the team gets its way. Sports Business Daily Reports:

America’s third-oldest MLB venue is looking to defy MLB’s legacy as the most traditional sport even more aggressively by selling naming rights to the field in Chavez Ravine, home to the Los Angeles Dodgers since 1962. Numerous industry sources tell us that Dodger Stadium’s field — thus, it would be X Corp. Field at Dodger Stadium — has been on the market since early spring with an asking price of $12 million per season.

The Dodgers can do that if they want, of course. But, as we discussed last week, they can’t force us to call it that. I suppose if Vin Scully were still calling their games he’d be obligated to say “welcome to Jamba Juice Field at Dodger Stadium!” but it wouldn’t make it any better.

In other news, that $12 million a season will cover 75% of Rich Hill‘s salary next year. Or Brandon McCarthy‘s entire salary with enough money leftover to re-sign Chase Utley at his current rate.