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John Lamb suspended 50 games after testing positive for a drug of abuse

4 Comments’s Mark Sheldon reports that Angels pitcher John Lamb has been suspended 50 games after testing positive for a second time for a drug of abuse.

Lamb, 26, underwent back surgery last October to repair a lumbar disc herniation. The Reds designated him for assignment shortly thereafter and was promptly acquired by the Rays in a trade. The Rays released him in November and the Angels signed him in December. Lamb wasn’t expected to be healthy enough to return until around the All-Star break.

Over parts of two seasons in the majors, Lamb made 24 starts and owns a 6.17 career ERA in 119 2/3 innings.

Phillies option Hector Neris to Triple-A

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The Phillies announced that they’ve optioned right-hander Hector Neris to Triple-A Lehigh Valley.

Nerris, who saved 26 games as the Phillies closer in 2017 and ten games in that role this year, has struggled this year, posting a 6.00 ERA in 30 appearances. While his strikeout and walk rates aren’t too far off what he was doing last year his hit rate has spiked and he’s currently allowing 10.3 safeties per nine. The wheels have come off of late, as he has allowed nine runs on 15 hits — five of them homers — over his last eight innings of work. Yesterday he allowed four runs in the ninth inning of a game the Phillies had led by five.

It was clear that Gabe Kapler had lost faith in Neris as a result, using him almost exclusively in low-leverage situations. That changed on Saturday, as Kapler used him in a save situation and said after the game that they were easing him back into his role. That plan obviously changed after yesterday’s meltdown.

Seranthony Dominguez had been getting the call in save situations. He’ll get them more now.