Don Sutton is really, really slick

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Barry Bloom of MLB.com has a fun, wide-ranging interview with Don Sutton. Lots of good stuff in there as Sutton is never short of opinions. But this is easily my favorite part:

MLB.com: Did you cheat?

Sutton: No, I never got caught cheating.

Bloom did not, sadly, follow up on that. Maybe his mind was blown by how slick an answer it was.

Not that we really need him to follow up. In 1978 he was ejected and suspended 10 days for defacing the ball, but he threatened to sue the National League and they backed off for some reason. He was also caught on video late in his career with what looked like sandpaper taped to the palm of his hand. Like I said, he was slick.

Nathan Eovaldi to make 2018 debut for Rays soon

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Rays manager Kevin Cash said that pitcher Nathan Eovaldi will join the starting rotation on Monday or Tuesday to face the Athletics, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports. Eovaldi’s rehab outing with Triple-A Durham went well, even though he gave up eight runs in four innings.

Eovaldi, 28, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2016 after undergoing Tommy John surgery. He had arthroscopic surgery in March to remove loose bodies in his elbow. It’s been a long road back. Knowing Eovaldi needed to recover from surgery, the Rays signed him to a one-year, $2 million contract in 2017 that included a $2 million club option for 2018 that they exercised last November.

When Eovaldi last pitched, he ranked among baseball’s hardest throwers, particularly among starters. He averaged 97.1 MPH on his fastball in 2016. Among starters who racked up at least 100 innings that season, only the Mets’ Noah Syndergaard had a higher average velocity (97.9 MPH). It remains to be seen if he still has that velocity after undergoing two procedures on his elbow.

The Rays will be glad to have Eovaldi back. The club has sustained injuries to Jake Faria, Yonny Chirinos, and Jose De Leon.