Jason Heyward hoping to rejoin lineup tomorrow

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Jason Heyward sat out games Sunday and Monday because of shin splints, but was able to take batting practice this morning and manager Bobby Cox indicated that he could return to the lineup as soon as tomorrow.
Prior to the shin splints Heyward had the Grapefruit League buzzing by going 17-for-49 (.347) with several cars smashed by monstrous home runs to win the Braves’ right field job (and Craig Calcaterra’s heart) at age 20 and with all of 50 games above Single-A.
For more on the best position player prospect in baseball, check out my “What kind of damage can Jason Heyward do as a 20-year-old rookie?” analysis from last week.

Padres may have more interest in Dallas Keuchel than Bryce Harper

Dallas Keuchel
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An interesting tidbit today from The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal, who noted that ongoing talks between agent Scott Boras and the Padres have focused more on starting pitcher Dallas Keuchel than slugger Bryce Harper. Earlier this week, there were conflicting reports on the Padres’ level of interest in Harper — MLB Network’s Jon Heyman heard the club had not ruled out another big signing after getting Manny Machado, while Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune talked to multiple sources who believed otherwise — but any agreement between the two is looking unlikelier by the day.

As for Keuchel, Rosenthal cautions that a potential deal is still a “longshot,” especially as the team has other, cheaper options in mind. The 31-year-old southpaw turned down a qualifying offer from the Astros last year and is likely angling for something north of the five-year, $90 million contract extension he rejected from the club in 2016. He’s coming off of another solid performance in Houston, where he went 12-11 in 34 starts with a 3.74 ERA, 2.6 BB/9, 6.7 SO/9, and 3.6 fWAR through 204 2/3 innings in 2018.

While Keuchel has failed to garner substantial interest around the league this offseason, Heyman points out that the Phillies are looking to establish themselves as frontrunners for the lefty — and they’re far less likely to have hang-ups about his asking price, too.