Blue Jays “have placed multiple calls” to Angels about Howie Kendrick

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Last week Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reported that the Angels were likely to shop second baseman Howie Kendrick and now Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet Canada writes that the Blue Jays “have placed multiple calls on his availability this year.”

Kendrick hit .293 with seven homers and a .744 OPS in 157 games this season, basically matching his career totals and ranking among the league’s best all-around second basemen. However, the Angels are willing to deal him because Kendrick will be a free agent after next season and they have in-house options to replace him in Grant Green and Gordon Beckham.

In nine seasons as a big leaguer Kendrick has never hit below .275 or posted an OPS under .720. He doesn’t have much power and swings at everything, but Kendrick has plus speed, a good glove, and has consistently been an above-average hitter at an up-the-middle position.

Michael Kopech has opted out of the 2020 season

Kopech has opted out
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Michael Kopech has opted out of the 2020 season. The White Sox starter informed the team of his decision today, and the team issued a press release to that affect a few minutes ago.

The statement from general manager Rick Hahn. said “we recognize that reaching this decision is incredibly difficult for any competitive athlete, and our organization is understanding and supportive. We will work with Michael to assure his development continues throughout 2020, and we look forward to welcoming him back into our clubhouse for the 2021 season.”

Kopech, 24, has only four big league starts under his belt, all coming in late August and early September of 2018, but after a strong spring training he was likely to make Chicago’s rotation at some point in the 2020 season after sitting out all of 2019 following Tommy John surgery. Kopech was among the players sent to Chicago from the Red Sox in the Chris Sale trade back in December 2016. Others involved in the deal included Yoán Moncada, Victor Diaz, and Luis Alexander Basabe.

Now, however, Kopech has opted out.