Francisco Cordero won’t make Red Sox despite 0.00 ERA

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Francisco Cordero did all he could do to make the Red Sox on a minor-league contract, throwing eight scoreless innings with an 8/1 K/BB ratio this spring, but the 39-year-old longtime closer has been told that he won’t be on the Opening Day roster.

Alex Speier of WEEI.com reports that the Red Sox offered Cordero a spot in their Triple-A bullpen and he’s debating whether to accept while also shopping around for a big-league offer elsewhere.

Cordero sat out all of last season following shoulder surgery and pitched terribly for the Blue Jays and Astros in 2011, but he’s lost a bunch of weight and showed that he might have a little something left in the tank after saving 329 career games.

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Nationals to reinstate Max Scherzer on Thursday

Max Scherzer
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Some good news for the Nationals today: All-Star hurler Max Scherzer is due back from the injured list this week, this time (hopefully) for good. He’s slated to start during Thursday’s series finale against the Pirates.

It’s been a long road back for the right-hander, who earned his seventh consecutive All-Star designation after heading into the break with a 2.30 ERA, 5.6 fWAR, and a league-leading 7.56 SO/BB rate. An untimely back injury forced him to the injured list in the days leading up to the All-Star Game, however, and he hasn’t returned in any kind of part-time or full-time capacity since.

While Scherzer was originally expected to pitch for the Nationals sometime during their weekend series versus the Brewers, manager Dave Martinez elected to push back his return date by a few days. It’s not clear whether he felt some lingering pain during his 64-pitch simulated start on Saturday or whether the Nationals simply want to play it safe with their ace, but either way, the club apparently feels like Scherzer will be back to full strength before the end of the week.

If so, his return would be a significant asset to the Nationals, who could use a sub-3.00 ERA, 5.0-fWAR starter to help bolster their standing in the NL East. Still, there’s no guarantee that the veteran righty is ready to shoulder a full-time role in Washington’s rotation, nor is it certain that he’ll be able to match his results from the first half of the season. In one start between IL stints last month, he dealt five innings of three-run, two-walk, eight-strikeout ball in an 8-7 loss to the Rockies.