Diamondbacks “looking to trade” John McDonald

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This offseason HardballTalk had several posts wondering why, exactly, the Diamondbacks seemed to be collecting light-hitting utility infielders. It turns out maybe they didn’t know why either.

Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that Arizona is now “looking to trade” John McDonald because he’s behind Willie Bloomquist and Cliff Pennington on the depth chart. And that’s not even counting Didi Gregerius, the shortstop prospect acquired in the Trevor Bauer deal who could be starting for the Diamondbacks at some point this season.

McDonald is owed $1.5 million this season and at age 38 it’s no longer clear if his defense can make up for his awful offense. He hit .249 with a .681 OPS last season and that’s actually 73 points higher than his lifetime OPS and the second-best mark of his career.

Cubs shut Brandon Morrow down for remainder of 2019

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Cubs reliever Brandon Morrow, on a rehab assignment as he works his way back from elbow and forearm issues, suffered a setback and has been shut down for the remainder of the 2019 season, MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian reports.

Morrow, 35, hasn’t pitched since July 15, 2018. The right-hander inked a two-year, $21 million contract with the Cubs in December 2017 but has been unable to stay healthy. When he did pitch last year, he was excellent, limiting the opposition to five runs on 24 hits and nine walks with 31 strikeouts and 22 saves in 30 2/3 innings.

Morrow is likely done as a Cub. He has a vesting option for 2020 worth $12 million. The details aren’t publicly available but it presumably won’t vest. The Cubs can instead buy him out for $3 million, making him a free agent.