Jhoulys Chacin
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Twins sign Jhoulys Chacin to minor league deal

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Right-handed starter Jhoulys Chacin is signing with the Minnesota Twins, according to Jon Heyman and Robert Murray. Heyman reports that it will be a minor league deal, but that Chacin is expected to make the team.

Chacin, 35, spent a rough 2019 with the Brewers and the Red Sox. The new super-ball was unkind to him. He posted an ugly 6.01 ERA over 103.1 innings, largely fueled by a decline in ground ball rate and a stunning 21% of his fly balls leaving the yard, as well as a slight increase in walks. That came on the heels of two strong campaigns with the Padres and Milwaukee, so the Twins are hoping that Chacin can return to form and provide some innings in the back of their rotation.

Minnesota has already added Homer Bailey and Rich Hill to their starting mix this offseason, in addition to bringing back the resurgent Michael Pineda. Hill will likely start the season on the IL and Pineda has the remainder of a PED suspension to serve, so Rocco Baldelli’s club will take all the innings Chacin can give them. Chacin will be contending with hurlers like Randy Dobnak, Devin Smeltzer, Brusdar Graterol (a top prospect who may wind up in the bullpen) and Lewis Thorpe for a job in camp.

All in all, it’s a solid upside play for Minnesota. If Chacin can recapture what he had in 2017 and 2018, great. If not, he’s a decent swingman option, or they could simply cut bait and go to one of their depth guys. The big pitching acquisition many Twins fans were hoping for never materialized, but this is one of those little moves that smart teams make. You can do a lot worse for a non-roster invitee lottery ticket than Chacin.

Note: An earlier version of this article said that Chacin is left-handed. Obviously, he is right-handed. Nick will be sent to bed without dessert.

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Mike Tirico to host NBC Sports’ new daily sports talk show ‘Lunch Talk Live’

NBC Sports
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NBC Sports’ new daily sports talk show, Lunch Talk Live, debuts this Monday, April 6, at Noon ET on NBCSN, featuring host Mike Tirico joined by special guests, including current and former athletes, NBC Sports’ lineup of on-air commentators, and other prominent voices and figures within sports and media.

Lunch Talk Live focuses on the current state of the sports world and the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, providing guests with a platform to discuss the state of sports, voice their personal stories and detail how they are adapting their daily lives during this challenging time.

“In these challenging times, we are all missing sports and the people who make sports memories,” said Tirico. “Hopefully, we can bring a midday connection with some of them to help fill the void.”

Sam Flood, NBC Sports Executive Producer & President of Production, said, “We’re excited to bring viewers fresh programming every day with unique, topical conversations from prominent individuals in all corners of sports. This will be a daily lunch date to share sports and stories we miss during these unique times.”

The hour-long show will air weekdays at Noon ET on NBCSN and stream on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app. Select content and interviews will additionally be hosted on NBC Sports’ YouTube channel and social media platforms.

Tirico will host Lunch Talk Live episodes remotely, beginning this Monday.