J.A. Happ frustrated with his role in Toronto

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J.A. Happ was one of several odd men out after the Blue Jays acquired R.A. Dickey, Mark Buehrle, and Josh Johnson via trades with the Mets and Marlins. The 30-year-old lefty is on the outside looking in and the subject of many trade rumors, which has made him unhappy.

Happ has a career 4.19 ERA in 590 career innings, including a 5.08 ERA over the last two seasons with the Astros and Blue Jays. The Jays will decide, if Happ is not traded, whether he is better suited to start the season in the bullpen as a long reliever or with Triple-A Buffalo in the starting rotation.

Report: White Sox acquire Yonder Alonso from Indians

Yonder Alonso
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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.