Tim Stauffer out 4-6 weeks after appendectomy

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After years of bouncing back and forth between Triple-A and the majors Tim Stauffer looked to be grabbing a permanent spot on the Padres’ pitching staff by posting a 0.39 ERA and 19/4 K/BB ratio in 23.1 innings. And now he’s out for a month following an emergency appendectomy.
Stauffer was sleeping in a hotel room in San Francisco when abdominal pain woke him in the wee hours yesterday morning. He hopped on his iPhone and punched the symptoms into WebMD.com, finally calling Padres trainer Todd Hutcheson at 3:15 a.m. “He had himself diagnosed,” Hutcheson said. “He said, ‘I think I have appendicitis.’ It was pretty swollen, his whole side of the stomach was pretty tight.”
Sure enough, Stauffer took a taxi to the nearest hospital and underwent an appendectomy, which Hutcheson said is a first for him in 20 years as the Padres’ trainer. Roy Halladay is the last prominent pitcher to have an in-season appendectomy, missing about three weeks of action in 2007, so there’s a chance Stauffer could be back by early next month. In the meantime maybe he can put his diagnostic skills to work assisting the trainer. If nothing else, his new nickname needs to be “Doc.”

Astros talking to Justin Verlander, Gerrit Cole about extensions

Justin Verlander
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It’s extension season and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Astros — who already agreed to an extension with Alex Bregman — are discussing contract extensions with Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole.

Funny thing about Verlander, by the way: when he got his current $180 million deal, most people fell into the “oh, there’s an overpay!” column. What’s more, this past winter, when everyone was talking about how bad it is to give guys big long term deals, Verlander’s name was notably absent in the conversation despite the fact that his deal has turned out to be quite good. I suppose that says something about how good the anti-long-term deal folks are at cherrypicking.

That being said, Rosenthal says “it would be an upset” if either Verlander or Cole signed extensions. I can see that. Verlander is locked up this year and has a vesting option for 2020, and a lot can happen in a year or two. Cole is a Scott Boras client and Boras clients tend to hit the market rather than sign extensions. Perhaps their former teammate, Dallas Keuchel‘s, terrible experience on the free agent market this winter will alter that calculus. Hard to say.