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Report: Royals to sign Ricky Nolasco


ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that the Royals are expected to sign pitcher Ricky Nolasco. Given Nolasco’s age and recent performance, the deal is likely of the minor league variety. (Update: The deal has been finalized, per Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports. Nolasco will earn $1.5 million, can earn $250,000 in additional incentives, and has an opt-out date for March 24, Heyman adds.)

Nolasco, 35, posted a 4.92 ERA with a 143/58 K/BB ratio in 181 innings across 33 starts for the Angels last season. His last productive season was in 2013 when he pitched for the Marlins and Dodgers. Since 2014, Nolasco has a composite 4.99 ERA.

Nolasco will serve as rotation depth for the rebuilding Royals. The club recently placed Jesse Hahn on the 60-day disabled list with a sprained UCL and Nate Karns isn’t a guarantee to be ready by Opening Day after undergoing surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome last July.

Dodgers acquire Manny Machado from Orioles for five minor leaguers

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The Orioles and Dodgers finally completed the trade involving Manny Machado, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports. The Orioles will receive five prospects from the Dodgers: Yusniel Diaz, Dean Kremer, Zach Pop, Rylan Bannon, and Breyvic Valera.

Machado, 26, is in the final year of his contract, so this is currently a rental for the first-place Dodgers. Machado ended the first half batting .315/.387/.575 with 24 home runs, 65 RBI, 48 runs scored, and eight stolen bases in 413 plate appearances. In Los Angeles, he will handle shortstop, allowing Chris Taylor to move over to second base.

MLB Pipeline rated Diaz as the Dodgers’ No. 4 prospect and No. 84 across baseball. Kremer was No. 27 in the Dodgers’ system and Bannon was No. 28.

Diaz, 21, is considered the centerpiece of the trade. The outfielder hit .314/.428/.477 with 20 extra-base hits, 30 RBI, and 36 runs scored in 264 plate appearances at Double-A Tulsa this season.

Kremer, 22, was selected by the Dodgers in the 14th round of the 2016 draft. He spent most of his season with High-A Rancho Cucamonga before earning a promotion to Tulsa earlier this month. Overall, in 17 starts, the right-hander posted a 3.03 ERA with a 125/29 K/BB ratio in 86 innings.

Pop, 21, was selected by the Dodgers in the seventh round of the 2017 draft. He has spent his season between Rancho Cucamonga and Single-A Great Lakes. Overall, he compiled a 1.04 ERA with 47 strikeouts and 13 walks in 43 1/3 innings of relief.

Bannon, 22, was selected by the Dodgers in the eighth round of the 2017 draft. With Rancho Cucamonga this season, the infielder batted .296/.402/.559 with 20 home runs and 61 RBI in 403 PA.

Valera, 26, has appeared in 20 games at the major league level for the Dodgers this season, batting a meager .172 with a .445 OPS in 34 PA. Valera has versatility, having played second base, third base, and corner outfield this year while also having experience in center field, shortstop, and first base.