Dodgers officially release Ted Lilly

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Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times reports that the Dodgers have officially released left-hander Ted Lilly, who was designated for assignment on July 25 and passed through waivers unclaimed.

Lilly posted a 5.09 ERA and 1.61 WHIP in 23 innings (five starts) this season for Los Angeles, striking out 18 batters but issuing 10 walks. He’s been bothered most of the summer by chronic neck discomfort.

The 37-year-old southpaw is now a free agent and can sign with any team for the major league minimum. He is healthy at the moment and figures to draw interest given the lack of financial commitment required. The Dodgers still owe him whatever remains on his $13 million salary for 2013.

Ex-Angels employee charged in overdose death of Tyler Skaggs

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FORT WORTH, Texas — A former Angels employee has been charged with conspiracy to distribute fentanyl in connection with last year’s overdose death of Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs, prosecutors in Texas announced Friday.

Eric Prescott Kay was arrested in Fort Worth, Texas, and made his first appearance Friday in federal court, according to Erin Nealy Cox, the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas. Kay was communications director for the Angels.

Skaggs was found dead in his hotel room in the Dallas area July 1, 2019, before the start of what was supposed to be a four-game series against the Texas Rangers. The first game was postponed before the teams played the final three games.

Skaggs died after choking on his vomit with a toxic mix of alcohol and the powerful painkillers fentanyl and oxycodone in his system, a coroner’s report said. Prosecutors accused Kay of providing the fentanyl to Skaggs and others, who were not named.

“Tyler Skaggs’s overdose – coming, as it did, in the midst of an ascendant baseball career – should be a wake-up call: No one is immune from this deadly drug, whether sold as a powder or hidden inside an innocuous-looking tablet,” Nealy Cox said.

If convicted, Kay faces up to 20 years in prison. Federal court records do not list an attorney representing him, and an attorney who previously spoke on his behalf did not immediately return a message seeking comment.