Indians place Scott Kazmir on DL, call up Trevor Bauer

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Scott Kazmir’s comeback is on hold because of an abdominal strain that has him headed to the disabled list and the Indians announced that top prospect Trevor Bauer will be called up from Triple-A to take his place in the rotation Saturday.

Bauer was the No. 3 overall pick in the 2011 draft, almost immediately fell out of favor with the Diamondbacks, and was traded to the Indians this winter in the three-team swap involving Shin-Soo Choo.

He was optioned to Triple-A on March 21, but won’t get a chance to actually make a start there and will instead make his Indians debut versus the Rays. It’s possible that Cleveland would have chosen Carlos Carrasco over Bauer to make the fill-in starts, but Carrasco is serving a six-game suspension.

Kazmir is expected to miss 2-3 starts, but by the time he’s ready to join the rotation Bauer may have grabbed hold of a spot for good.

Phillies owner John Middleton is in Las Vegas with Bryce Harper

Bryce Harper
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Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia reports that Phillies owner John Middleton flew to Las Vegas for a meeting with Bryce Harper on Friday. Per ESPN’s Jeff Passan, it’s “more of a meet-and-greet than a sign-a-deal” affair, but as the club is still at the forefront of trade rumors involving the All-Star slugger, there remains a possibility (however slight) that something could be completed in the days to come.

Even now, the Phillies aren’t alone in the race to sign Harper, but recent rumors have helped whittle down the competition from five or more teams (Phillies, Nationals, White Sox, Giants, and Padres) to three strong contenders. The Giants are said to be interested in a lucrative short-term deal with the outfielder, while the Padres remain in the conversation despite inking Manny Machado to a mammoth 10-year, $300 million contract this week. It’s not yet clear just how far either team would go to outbid Philadelphia as talks with Harper intensify.

As for the Nationals and White Sox, the former officially bowed out earlier today, and MLB Network’s Jon Heyman adds that the latter won’t make a strong play for Harper as they feel the asking price and competing offers are “getting too high” for the 26-year-old’s services. If a mystery team is still in the mix, there’s been no word on their standing with Harper in the last month or so.