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Braves place Mike Soroka on the DL with shoulder inflammation. Again.

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Braves starter Mike Soroka made his big league debut at the beginning of May and he was excellent. Then he struggled for two starts and went on the disabled list due to a sore shoulder.

Nine days ago, in his first start back after being reactivated, he was excellent again, taking a no-hitter into the seventh inning against the Mets. In his last start he struggled and saw his velocity dip. Now the cycle continues:

I’m pretty good at those tests where they make you spot patterns, so I’m gonna guess that he gets reactivated again soon, has one good start and then IMMEDIATELY goes back on the disabled list. Your classic 3-2-1 tightening-spiral situation. Can’t get a thing by me.

Soroka is 20 and he has great stuff and great promise, but at this point you have to figure the Braves are going to approach this with a ton of caution and keep him out of action for a while.

Giants nearing deal with Cameron Maybin

Cameron Maybin
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The Giants are finalizing a minor league deal for free agent outfielder Cameron Maybin, according to Andrew Baggarly and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. The team has not confirmed the signing, but it’s in keeping with their stated goal of adding more veteran presence and outfield options to their roster in advance of the 2019 season.

Maybin, 31, appeared in back-to-back gigs with the Marlins and Mariners in 2018. He slashed an underwhelming .249/.326/.336 with four home runs, 10 stolen bases (in 15 chances), a .662 OPS, and 0.5 fWAR through 384 plate appearances for the two clubs, a clear improvement over his totals in 2017 but still shy of the career numbers he posted with the Padres all the way back in 2011. It’s not only his offense that has tanked, but his speed and defense in center field, all of which he’ll try to improve as he jockeys for a roster spot in camp this month.

The Giants’ outfield has been largely depleted of any kind of consistent talent lately, especially taking into account the recent departures of Hunter Pence, Gregor Blanco, and Gorkys Hernández. Even with the acquisition of, say, All-Star right fielder Bryce Harper, there’s nothing standing in the way of Maybin and fellow veteran signee Gerardo Parra grabbing hold of full- or part-time roles this year, though they’ll need to outperform candidates like Chris Shaw, Steven Duggar, Drew Ferguson, Mac Williamson, Austin Slater, Craig Gentry, Mike Gerber, and others first.

In a previous report on Friday, Baggarly revealed that a “handshake understanding” had been established with several veteran players already this offseason, all but guaranteeing them regular starting opportunities over the course of the season. How those agreements will be affected by spring training performances remains to be seen, but at least for now, the Giants appear prepared to give their newest players a long leash as they try to get back on top in the NL West.