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Behold: the most depressing rumor of the hot stove season

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It’s been a total drag of a hot stove season, with few teams doing all that much to improve themselves and none, really, doing anything bold. We have four of the top free agents, and over 100 in all, still looking for work. We have so much front office cloudspeak circulating that it’s numbing my brain.

It’s getting so bad that I’m starting to imagine what life would be like if major league baseball operations executives ran the world if a disaster hit.

Like, say, Thanos appears and begins to wreak havoc. The Earth is in ruins. Evil forces are running amok. Our only hope is for a team superheroes to save us. In walks, Gleek the monkey from “The Superfriends,” John C. Reilly’s character from “Guardians of the Galaxy,” and, like, Dollar Bill from “Watchmen,” at which point some general manager says, “I like our team. I’m comfortable with how we look. Would we like to have Iron Man and The Hulk? Sure, who wouldn’t? But we have to make sure what we do fits with our model.”

Against that backdrop appeared the most depressing rumor of the hot stove season:

I’m not sure what’s more depressing: two of the richest teams in baseball thinking about how to mitigate bad money concerns or the notion that the Giants might actually feature Jacoby Ellsbury in center field at some point. Thirty-five combined World Series titles and sixty-three combined pennants between them and the most interesting rumor about them this week is that they’re considering a garbage swap. The mind reels.

Anyway, pitchers and catchers report in like a week. Are you pumped? I’m totally pumped.

Clayton Kershaw shut down with “an arm kind of thing”

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Spring training is just underway but Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw is already being shut down indefinitely.

Kershaw threw two bullpen sessions this week and, as the Los Angeles Times reports, he “didn’t feel right” afterward. Manager Dave Roberts said it was “arm kind of thing,” which, viva specificity. Roberts did allow that it might be so-called “dead arm” but it’s too soon to know. For now he’ll be working out as usual but not throwing.

Kershaw has had an increasing number of nagging injuries and ailments over the past several seasons, limiting him to 26 starts last year, 27 the year before and 21 in 2016. Whether this is something serious or not is unknown, but at least he’s experiencing it now instead of the middle of the season.