Marc Carig of Newsday reports that Mets prospect Zack Wheeler has been pulled out of the rotation at Triple-A Las Vegas and sent to New York City for an examination by team doctors after complaining of some soreness in his right clavicle (or collarbone).
The Mets do not think that Wheeler has a serious injury and are hopeful that he will be ready to rejoin the Las Vegas 51s at some point next week.
Wheeler has posted a 3.74 ERA, 1.34 WHIP and 47/18 K/BB ratio in 43 1/3 innings this season in the minor leagues. The 22-year-old right-hander should arrive in the major leagues for good later this summer.
Wheeler ranked 11th on Baseball America‘s listing of the Top 100 prospects this past winter.
The Royals are in agreement with right-handed reliever Drew Storen on a minor league deal, the team announced Friday. Per Jon Heyman of MLB Network, the deal is worth $1.25 million if the veteran righty breaks camp with the club this spring. Additional, albeit unspecified incentives will be included in the contract as well.
Storen, 31, is coming off of a protracted absence from any MLB duties. After inking a one-year deal with the Reds in 2017, he sustained a right elbow sprain toward the end of the year and underwent Tommy John surgery that October. He was effectively decommissioned for the club’s entire 2018 run and generated little interest around the league this winter, perhaps due in part to the uninspired 4.45 ERA, 3.8 BB/9, 7.9 SO/9, and career-low -0.2 fWAR he posted across 54 2/3 innings during his last healthy season.
While it’s not immediately clear what kind of performance the Royals can expect from Storen in spring training, they’re not exactly in a position to be choosy. Their bullpen ranked dead last among all MLB teams with a collective 5.04 ERA, 4.85 FIP, and -2.2 fWAR last year, and still appears to be in a state of flux as they approach Opening Day. Skipper Ned Yost told reporters Wednesday that he intends to eschew the traditional closer appointment in 2019 and will instead utilize a combination of right-handers Wily Peralta and Brad Boxberger, lefty Tim Hill, and various others as he tackles high-leverage situations in the future.