Sure, Johnny Damon would listen if the Royals called

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Johnny Damon on MLBNetwork Radio on SiriusXM a few minutes ago, talking about playing in 2013:

“I sure hope so. I’m not going to announce until the middle of spring … Seeing what Kansas City has done to their pitching staff, I wouldn’t mind going there and trying to finish where I started.”

Of course Kansas City is one of the few teams which has a very good, dedicated DH, so it’s probably one of the worst fits for Damon.

Still, him signing with the Royals would be fun. If for no other reason than we’d be certain to hear some analysis which, paired with the post-Wil Myers trade analysis from the same people in which Myers was all but totally discounted due to merely being a prospect, would work out to folks saying that Damon has more to add to the 2013 Royals than Myers would have.

Ketel Marte shut down with back injury

Ketel Marte
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With just over a week left in the regular season, the Diamondbacks have elected to shut down infielder/outfielder Ketel Marte. Marte has been dealing with some lower back inflammation and stiffness over the last few days; on Friday, the team revealed that he was diagnosed with a stress reaction as well.

It doesn’t look as though the injury will compromise Marte’s 2020 campaign, but as Craig noted on Wednesday, his absence will likely have some effect on his NL MVP candidacy. The 25-year-old will wrap his first All-Star season with a .329/.389/.592 batting line, 32 home runs, a .981 OPS, and a staggering, career-best 7.1 fWAR through 628 plate appearances.

Marte told reporters Thursday that the back pain had been an issue “for the past two months,” though he didn’t comment on the severity of the injury. Despite his ability to play through the pain since July, the issue has clearly escalated in the last week or so. Although the loss of their most valuable contributor may have a negative impact on the D-backs’ chances of competing in the postseason, it’s undeniably a wise move to let Marte recuperate rather than pushing him to play for another week and running the risk of further injury.

Entering Friday’s series against the Padres — their last road series of the regular season — Arizona still has a sizable gap to close in order to earn one of two NL wild card spots. They’re five games out of postseason contention, with the Nationals, Brewers, Cubs, Mets, and Phillies ahead of them.