Shohei Ohtani’s first start will be Sunday

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The Angels selected the contract of pitcher/DH Shohei Ohtani and added him to the 40-man and 25-man roster. To create a 40-man spot, they designated catcher Carlos Perez for assignment.

That may not be super shocking news, but Ohtani has struggled mightily this spring, neither hitting nor pitching well, and at least some people have suggested giving him some time in the minors. That always seemed extraordinarily unlikely given the attention that has been focused on the two-way star, both in terms of media coverage and, likely, in ticket sales and marketing. He was always going to be given the opportunity to fail at the big league level before seeing time at Salt Lake City. It’s certainly the call most of us would make if we ran the club.

Ohtani is scheduled to make his major league pitching debut Sunday when he starts for the Los Angeles Angels in their fourth game of the season at Oakland. He is likewise expected to be the team’s designated hitter in at least one of the first three games, but it’s unclear if that will happen in the opener tomorrow.

 

Report: Mike Clevinger agrees to 1-year deal with White Sox

Kyle Ross-USA TODAY Sports
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CHICAGO — The Chicago White Sox bolstered their rotation, agreeing to a one-year contract with right-hander Mike Clevinger, a person familiar with the agreement told The Associated Press.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal was subject to a successful physical.

The 31-year-old Clevinger went 7-7 with a 4.33 ERA in 23 games, including 22 starts, for San Diego this year. He missed the 2021 season after he had Tommy John surgery.

Chicago is looking to bounce back from a disappointing 2022 season, when it went 81-81 and finished 11 games back of surprising AL Central champion Cleveland. Hall of Fame manager Tony La Russa stepped down in October and Pedro Grifol was hired on Nov. 1.

The White Sox got a big lift from Johnny Cueto this year, but the 36-year-old right-hander is a free agent after going 8-10 with a 3.35 ERA in 25 appearances. Clevinger slots into a rotation that likely will include Dylan Cease, Lance Lynn, Lucas Giolito and Michael Kopech.

The move puts the 6-foot-4 Clevinger back in the AL Central after he made his major league debut with Cleveland in 2016. He went 42-22 with a 3.20 ERA in four-plus seasons with Cleveland before he was traded to San Diego in a multiplayer deal in August 2020.

Clevinger was selected by the Los Angeles Angels in the fourth round of the 2011 amateur draft. He was traded to Cleveland in 2014.

Clevinger is 51-30 with a 3.39 ERA in 128 career big league games. He also has 694 strikeouts in 656 2/3 innings.