David Price dominates in return to the mound

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As I mentioned in the recap, yeah, it was the Astros. But that doesn’t change the fact that David Price was as sharp as a tack in his return from the disabled list last night. Price needed a mere 70 pitches to get through seven innings, striking out 10 while allowing just three singles to an overmatched Astros lineup.

Tampa Bay is five and a half games out in the tough AL East at the moment. Some of that hole was dug due to Price’s poor performance early in the season and poor performances from his replacements in the past month.  But if the David Price of 2012 is back in the Rays rotation, the future looks much brighter.

Rakuten Golden Eagles sign Jabari Blash

Jabari Blash
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Former Angels outfielder Jabari Blash has signed a one-year deal with the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles of Nippon Professional Baseball, the team announced Friday. Per the Japan Times, the deal is said to be worth around $1.06 million. Blash was released from his contract with the Angels at the end of November.

The 29-year-old outfielder has had a rough go of it in the majors, where he failed to duplicate the promising results he delivered in the minors. While he consistently batted above .250 with 20-30 home runs per season at the Double- and Triple-A level, he petered out in back-to-back gigs with the Padres and Angels and slumped toward a .103/.200/.128 finish across 45 PA for Anaheim in 2018.

The hope, of course, is that the environment in NPB will help him get a better handle on his issues at the plate — in a best case scenario, resulting in a full-scale transformation that could make him more marketable to MLB teams in the future. To that end, Blash expects to be utilized as a cleanup batter in the Eagles’ lineup and will focus on assisting the club as they make a run toward the Japan Series.