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Jeremy Hellickson retires

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Tommy Birch of the Des Moines Register reports that pitcher Jeremy Hellickson is retiring.

Hellickson pitched for the Washington Nationals for the past two seasons, making 19 starts for the Nats in 2018 and posting an ERA of 3.45 in 91 innings. He declined in 2020, however, appearing in just nine games in which he pitched ineffectively. Prior to his time in Washington he pitched for the Orioles, Phillies, Diamondbacks and Rays.

It was with Tampa Bay where Hellickson, at one time, was one of the top prospects in all of baseball. He was the Baseball America Minor League Player of the Year in 2010 and won the American League Rookie of the Year Award in 2011. His suffered a handful of injuries in his career, however, and he’d never really have a better year than he did in his rookie campaign.

As he hangs them up, however, he has a ten-year track record of workmanlike performance, posting a career record of 76-75 and an ERA of 4.13 (97 ERA+) in 232 games, all but eight of which were starts.

Rumor: MLB execs discussing 100-game season that would begin July 1

David Price and Mookie Betts
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Matt Spiegel of 670 The Score Chicago heard from a source that Major League Baseball executives have been discussing a 100-game season that would begin on July 1 and conclude on October 15. It would essentially pick up the second half schedule, eliminating the All-Star Game while hosting the World Series at a neutral warm-weather stadium — ideally Dodger Stadium.

In the event the Dodgers, who won 106 games last year, made it all the way through the playoffs, the World Series would be hosted in Anaheim or San Diego. The earlier rounds of the playoffs would be played in the cities of the teams involved, which might be tough since the postseason would extend into November.

Spiegel went on to describe this vision as “an absolute best case scenario,” and that’s accurate. In order for the regular season to begin on July 1, the players would need to have several weeks if not a full month prior to get back into playing shape — more or less an abbreviated second spring training. And that would mean the U.S. having made significant progress against the virus by way of herd immunity or a vaccine, which would allow for nonessential businesses to resume operations. The U.S., sadly, is faring not so well compared to other nations around the world for a variety of reasons, but all of which point to a return to normalcy by the summer seeming rather unlikely.

Regardless, the league does have to plan for the potential of being able to start the regular season this summer just in case things really do break right and offer that opportunity. Commissioner Rob Manfred has stated multiple times about the league’s need to be creative, referring to ideas like playing deep into the fall, changing up the location of games, playing without fans in attendance, etc. This rumor certainly fits the “creative” mold.