Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com reports that Matt Garza has been scratched from Sunday’s scheduled start against the Red Sox due to right elbow tightness. It will be probably all hands on deck for the Cubs tomorrow, though James Russell or Jeff Samardzija are the most likely candidates to make the start.
According to Paul Sullivan of Chicago Tribune, Garza will have the elbow examined by team doctors when the team returns home Monday, but Cubs are hopeful he will only have to miss one start.
Garza, who was acquired from the Rays in January, has a 3.72 ERA and 68/20 K/BB ratio over his first nine starts this season. He has averaged 10.99 K/9 over 55 2/3 innings, which is tops among major league starters.
The White Sox have reportedly picked up first baseman Yonder Alonso from the Indians, according to Stadium. The return for Alonso is expected to be nothing more flashy than a “fringe prospect,” though the minutiae of the deal is still pending a formal announcement from both teams.
Alonso, 31, inked a two-year deal with the Indians during the 2017 offseason. His first campaign with the club yielded a modest .250/.317/.421 batting line, 23 home runs, .738 OPS and 0.7 fWAR in 574 PA. The real boon for the White Sox may not be a passable veteran bat, however, but something more intangible — like Alonso’s clout with his brother-in-law and highly-coveted free agent slugger, Manny Machado.
While Alonso’s 2018 output represented a significant decline from the career-best numbers he posted in 2017, he’s still a solid contributor at the plate and, more importantly, slated to remain under team control for the next two years with just $8 million owed in 2019 and a $9 million option in 2020. As MLB.com’s Anthony Castrovince notes, the $17 million the Indians just erased from their payroll should give them enough room to accommodate the contracts for right-handers Trevor Bauer and Corey Kluber — a bonus regardless of what they happen to get in the trade.