Troubling news here for the second-place Tigers.
Max Scherzer, who has been one of the best pitchers in baseball over the past few months, was removed from his start Tuesday night against the A’s because of right shoulder fatigue. An MRI has already been scheduled, indicating that the Tigers medical staff believes the matter might be serious.
Scherzer yielded one earned run in two innings before making his early exit, fanning four. Those results included, he has a 3.78 ERA, 1.27 WHIP and 224/57 K/BB ratio through 178 2/3 innings pitched this season.
Detroit entered play Tuesday trailing the White Sox by three games in the American League Central.
UPDATE, 9:59 PM: According to Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle, the MRI ruled out structural damage. Scherzer won’t throw for several days but he did not suffer a major injury.
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.