Yankees to fill Okajima void with Clay Rapada

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The Yankees were on the hunt for another lefty relief candidate after Hideki Okajima failed his physical and apparently have found one in veteran Clay Rapada, says MLB.com.

Rapada, who turns 31 next month, is expected to get a minor league contract. The sidearmer had a 6.06 ERA in 16 1/3 innings for the Orioles last season, but he did hold lefties to a .104 average in 49 at-bats. The problem is that right-handers were 9-for-13 with two homers against him.

It’s the usual trend for Rapada and why he’s never been able to establish himself in the majors. In 78 lifetime appearances, lefties have hit .153 against him, while righties have come in at .359.

Barring a late trade or a surprising spring from Rapada or Rule 5 pick Cesar Cabral, there’s a good chance the Yankees will go with just one lefty reliever, that being Boone Logan.

Charlie Morton exits start with discomfort in right shoulder

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Astros pitcher Charlie Morton left Sunday’s start against the Angels after just one inning due to discomfort in his right shoulder, the team announced. Morton yielded a one-out double to Justin Upton, who later scored on a wild pitch. He averages about 96 MPH on his fastball but sat in the 92-94 MPH range in his one inning of work.

Morton, 34, went on the disabled list with right shoulder discomfort on August 29 and returned on September 8. It’s bad news for the Astros, who may have to go into the playoffs without him. If that is to be the case, Lance McCullers would take Morton’s spot in the rotation. It’s also bad news for Morton, who is a free agent after the season and figures to be one of the more sought-after starters.

Morton entered Sunday’s start 15-3 with a 3.15 ERA with a 195/63 K/BB ratio in 163 innings of work.