Agent says Aramis Ramirez won’t waive no-trade clause to leave Cubs

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Aramis Ramirez’s agent, Paul Kinzer, told Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune that the third baseman likely would not waive his no-trade clause to facilitate leaving the Cubs.

Of course, it might be a moot point anyway, as Ramirez is making $14.6 million this season with a $16 million option or $2 million buyout for 2012.

Toss in his measly two homers and .394 slugging percentage in 52 games and it’s hard to imagine any contenders being interested unless the Cubs basically eat the entire contract.

Kinzer noted that Ramirez “took less years and less money to stay in Chicago, so that is definitely his first option.” However, that’s a bit of a moot point as well, since there’s zero chance of the Cubs picking up his $16 million option for next season anyway. Ramirez is all but certain to leave Chicago after the season, so the question is whether he’s willing to leave a couple months earlier.

Apparently not, although Kinzer did say that the Cubs haven’t broached the topic yet.

Clayton Kershaw might return to the Dodgers’ rotation next week

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Dodgers southpaw Clayton Kershaw is nearing his return to the mound, according to club manager Dave Roberts. Both Kershaw (left biceps tendinitis) and fellow lefty Rich Hill (left middle finger blister) are scheduled to toss simulated games on Saturday; depending on the outcome, Roberts says Kershaw could forgo a minor league assignment and slot back into the rotation by Thursday.

Kershaw, 30, was diagnosed with biceps tendinitis as the team closed out their Mexico Series at the start of the month. He has not made a start in several weeks, but was finally able to resume throwing on Sunday and managed to get through two successful bullpen sessions. Though Dodgers’ ace hasn’t been completely injury-free over his 11-year career in the majors, this is the first significant issue he’s had with his pitching arm so far. The team is expected to take every precaution with the lefty, and will likely limit him to just four innings during Saturday’s simulated game.

Prior to his injury, Kershaw was working on another dominant run with the club, sporting a 2.86 ERA, 2.0 BB/9 and 9.8 SO/9 through his first 44 innings of the season. While Kershaw, Hill and left-handed starter Hyun-Jin Ryu served their respective terms on the disabled list this month, the Dodgers utilized a combination of relievers Ross Stripling and Brock Stewart, both of whom impressed during their limited time in the rotation.