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Dustin Pedroia ‘not sure’ he will be able to play again

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Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski, manager Alex Cora, and second baseman Dustin Pedroia addressed the media on Monday afternoon. Pedroia, who has been rehabilitating his surgically-repaired left knee, said that he is “not sure” he will ever be able to play baseball again, MLB.com’s Ian Browne reports.

Pedroia said, “I’m at a point right now where I need some time. That’s what my status is.” He added, “Some days, I feel fine, and an hour later, walking is tough. If I’m on an hour-to-hour basis of being able to do anything athletically, that’s tough. I think the time will give me the right answer of if I can do this.”

According to Browne, Pedroia will remain with the team through this weekend’s series in New York against the Yankees, then he will return home to spend some time with his family. Presumably, he will be contemplating retirement.

Pedroia, 35, played in only three games last year and appeared in just six games this year, accruing just three hits (all singles) in 34 plate appearances. While Pedroia has been out, Michael Chavis has handled second base and emerged as one of the most productive players on the Red Sox.

Indians trade Corey Kluber to the Texas Rangers

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The Cleveland Indians have traded two-time Cy Young Award winner Corey Kluber to the Texas Rangers. In exchange, Texas is sending center fielder Delino DeShields and pitcher Emmanuel Clase to the Indians. The deal is pending physical

Kluber made only seven starts this past year thanks to a broken arm and a strained oblique muscle. When he did pitch he was no great shakes, posting a 5.80 ERA and 44 hits in 35.2 innings. Those were freak injuries that do not suggest long-term problems, however, so there’s a good reason to think he’ll bounce back to useful form, even if it’s a tough ask for him to return to the form that won him the 2014 and 2017 Cy Young Award.

Before his injury-wracked 2019 campaign, Kluber pitched over 200 innings in each of his previous five seasons so mileage could be an issue. For his career he’s 98-58 with a 3.16 ERA (134 ERA+), a 2.99 FIP, and a K/BB ratio of 1,461/292 over 1,341.2 innings in nine big league seasons.

Unless there is cash coming from Cleveland in the deal, the Rangers will be paying him $17.5 million this year and a 2021 option of $14 million pursuant to the five-year, $38.5 million contract he inked with Cleveland before the 2015 season.

DeShields, 27, is a career .246/.326/.342 hitter (76 OPS+) and that’s about how he performed in 2019 as well. He was demoted to Triple-A Nashville in May. Clase, who will turn 22 before next season, pitched 21 games, all but one in relief, for the Rangers in 2019 and will still be considered a rookie in 2020. He has been used mostly as a reliever in the minors as well.

With all due respect to DeShields and Clase, this is a very light return for a pitcher who, despite his 2019 injuries, should be expected to come back and be a workhorse. It would seem to be a salary dump for Cleveland and a steal for Texas. It is likewise perplexing how any of the many, many teams who could use starting pitching — the Angels and the Mets, among others, come to mind — could not top the package Texas offered.