Roy Halladay to start minor league game Saturday

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Roy Halladay got knocked around while throwing in the mid-80s last week and then exited his follow-up start Sunday after just one inning because of the flu, but he’s now slated to pitch Saturday in a minor-league game.

Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com reports that Halladay threw his normal between-starts bullpen session today without any problems, but he has lost about 10 pounds from the illness.

According to Salisbury the plan is for Halladay to throw around 75 pitches Saturday and then throw around 90 pitches in his final spring training start, at which point he’d be ready for the regular season.

Félix Hernández to rejoin Mariners’ rotation for final start of 2018

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Mariners starter Félix Hernández will come off of the disabled list to make his final start of 2018 on Wednesday against the Athletics, MLB.com’s Greg Johns reports. Hernández has been on the disabled list since September 8 with a right hamstring strain.

Hernández, 32, has endured the worst season of his 14-year career. He’s 8-13 with a 5.46 ERA and a 121/57 K/BB ratio over 151 2/3 innings. Hernández wants the opportunity to finish 2018 on a good note. He said, “I feel good. No problems. It’s 100 percent. I just want to finish strong and show them I can still pitch. It wasn’t a big injury. They just wanted to give me some rest.”

Hernández is under contract for one more year at $27 million. He has been the face of the franchise for the last decade, but if he doesn’t show he’s capable of beating major league hitters by the end of spring training next year, the Mariners may not be able to afford to give him a spot in the starting rotation. Despite a second-half slide, the Mariners were competitive in the AL West this year, entering the All-Star break 58-39, five games out of first place. With some roster fine-tuning, the Mariners could give the Astros and Athletics a run for their money. Hernández’s involvement with that effort remains to be seen.