Cubs looking for relief help, interested in Frasor

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ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick reports that the Cubs are “urgently seeking relief help” following Angel Guzman’s latest injury setback and have shown interest in Jason Frasor of the Blue Jays.
Frasor is technically in a three-way battle for closing duties with Kevin Gregg and Scott Downs, but will almost surely begin the season in his usual setup role. He’s affordable at just $2.65 million and went 7-3 with a 2.50 ERA and 56/16 K/BB ratio in 57.2 innings last season, but prior to that Frasor had three straight years with an ERA in the 4.00s.
While not a dominant late-inning option he’d certainly be a solid pickup for the Cubs in a seventh- or perhaps even eighth-inning role. For the rebuilding Blue Jays it would make sense to deal Frasor if they can get at least one solid prospect in return, because he’s 32 years old and in his final season before free agency.

Kendrys Morales pitched a scoreless inning Sunday

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Nothing went right for the Blue Jays this weekend. The club was swept in a four-game series against the Athletics, including a 9-2 loss on Sunday. Not wanting to burn out his bullpen in a lopsided game — and perhaps thinking about the general entertainment value involved — Blue Jays manager John Gibbons decided to send designated hitter Kendrys Morales out to pitch the ninth inning. And in typical baseball fashion, he saw better results than some of the dudes who do this all the time.

Morales, who actually pitched in Cuba nearly 20 years ago, worked around a walk for a scoreless inning. He induced three fly outs and topped out at 87.4 mph on his fastball, per Brooks Baseball. He received a standing ovation on the way back to the dugout. Morales hasn’t been hearing that sort of thing for his contributions with the bat recently.

Morales, 34, is batting just .163/.248/.279 with three home runs through 32 games this season. There’s been some understandable clamoring for top prospect Vladmir Guerrero, Jr. to cut into his at-bats. For his part, Morales has been doing everything he can to break out of his slumber at the plate, including ditching the glasses he started wearing during spring training. Hey, whatever works. Morales also had two of Toronto’s four hits on Sunday.

On the heels of Morales’ first MLB appearance on the mound, it feels rather appropriate that the Blue Jays will get their first look at Angels sensation Shohei Ohtani — at least as a hitter — beginning on Tuesday.