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Indians exercise option on Carlos Carrasco

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This is not at all surprising, but the Indians officially exercised the $9.75 million club option on starter Carlos Carrasco for 2019.

Carrasco remains one of the biggest bargains in baseball following another excellent season for the Tribe. He went 17-10 with a 3.38 ERA and 231/43 K/BB ratio in 192 innings. People will be paying as much as three times that per year for comparable starters on the free agent market.

Carrasco signed his current contract at the beginning of the 2015 season. It was a four-year, $22 million deal with this $9 million option for this year, along with a $750,000 bonus for finishing in the top-10 of the Cy Young voting in 2017. There’s another club option for 2020, currently at $9.5 million, but it too could go higher if he rates high enough in this year’s awards voting. Unless he’s hit by a bus in 2019, that one will likely be exercised too.

In other news, the Indians declined their option on outfielder Brandon Guyer. He just finished a two-year, $5 million contract and the forgone option would’ve paid him $3 million in 2019. In 2018 Guyer hit .206/.300/.371 with seven homers in 221 plate appearances. The Indians will likely be able to find someone who could do that or better on a minor league deal.

Joe Kelly’s suspension reduced to 5 games on appeal

Joe Kelly suspended eight
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LOS ANGELES — Los Angeles Dodgers reliever Joe Kelly had his suspension for throwing pitches near the heads of Houston hitters reduced to five games on appeal.

Kelly was originally penalized eight games by Major League Baseball on July 29, a day after throwing a 96 mph fastball near the head of Houston’s Alex Bregman and two curveballs that brushed back Carlos Correa.

The players association said Wednesday night it was dismayed by the length of the ban.

“While we understand the concerns raised by the league with respect to a bench-clearing incident during this challenging season, we’re disappointed by the decision,” the union said. “It was an unfair result for Joe Kelly given the cases presented.”

The Dodgers on Wednesday confirmed the reduced penalty that was first reported by Barstool Sports.

Kelly went on the 10-day injured list retroactive to last Sunday with right shoulder inflammation. He will serve his suspension when he returns.

After striking out Corea, Kelly curled his lip into a pouting expression and exchanged words with the shortstop.

Benches cleared after Kelly’s actions during the sixth inning of Los Angeles’ 5-2 win at Houston in the teams’ first meeting since it was revealed the Astros stole signs en route to a 2017 World Series title over the Dodgers.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts served his one-game suspension the same day the penalty was handed down. Astros manager Dusty Baker was fined an undisclosed amount.

Kelly denied that he purposely threw at the Astros. He has previously been suspended in his career for throwing at a batter.

The penalties were imposed by former pitcher Chris Young, MLB’s senior vice president of baseball operations, who issued his first ruling since taking over the job from Joe Torre.