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Matt Joyce signs with Indians

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Not gonna say there is nothing happening on the hot stove again today, but this is literally the most substantial news I’ve seen: Matt Joyce has signed a minor league deal with the Cleveland Indians.

Which, why not? He stands a slim chance of making most contenders’ rosters, but the Indians’ outfield situation is sufficiently slim to where he might make it happen if everything breaks just right.

Joyce had a bad 2018, hitting just .208/.322/.353 in 207 at-bats for the A’s, but he was more than decent the previous two seasons, posting an .866 OPS in 2016 for Pittsburgh and an .808 OPS in Oakland in 2017. He’s a platoon guy with some pop, and if he looks rejuvenated enough this spring he may constitute an improvement over the corner guys the Tribe is currently featuring on their depth chart: Tyler Naquin and some combination of Jake Bauers and Jordan Luplow.

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.