Phillies will stretch Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez out as a starter in spring training

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Phillies pitcher Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez, currently contributing out of the bullpen, will be stretched out as a starter in spring training next year, Jim Salisbury of CSN Philly reports. Gonzalez and the Phillies agreed to a three-year, $12 million contract in August last year after the right-hander defected from Cuba. Gonzalez’s Phillies career got off to a rocky start as he suffered from inflammation in his right shoulder, delaying his professional debut until mid-May.

The Phillies lack starting pitching depth, as Kyle Kendrick is soon to be a free agent, Cole Hamels could be dealt, A.J. Burnett could retire, and Cliff Lee’s health is still a question mark.

Gonzalez has logged only 4 1/3 innings in the majors thus far, but he’s had poor results, posting an 8.31 ERA with a 4/3 K/BB ratio. In the minor leagues, he progressed from Single-A Clearwater to Double-A Reading to Triple-A Lehigh Valley, compiling 46 1/3 innings in total. Across all three levels, he had a 3.11 ERA with a 54/26 K/BB ratio.

Freddie Freeman has elbow surgery

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Freddie Freeman‘s elbow began barking in the second half of the season and he was a shadow of himself in the month of September. The Braves rested him for half a minute in the season’s final week but he still played 158 games in 2019. They said he was good to go for the NLDS but he was clearly limited, going 4-for-22 in the Braves’ series loss to the Cardinals.

Today the Braves announced that Freeman underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right elbow on Wednesday. The team said today that the procedure involved the removal of three fragmented loose bodies and the cleaning up of multiple bone spur formations.

It’s not clear if more rest down the stretch would’ve made a difference for him — and it’s not clear that the Braves had options at first base for the postseason that were substantially better than even a limited Freeman — but it’s clear that not having Freeman feeling like himself in the heart of the order was a problem.

Freeman is expected to be good-to-go for spring training.