As expected, the Washington Nationals took Stephen Strasburg with the first pick in the draft. Getting someone with his credentials (195Ks in 105 college innings this year) is certainly exciting and one hopes he is immensely successful for both the team and his career. I wonder if any Jayhawks will get drafted… I mean, we need more Jayhawks in the Majors (Tom Gorzellany!).
The draft dominates most baseball coverage, but a few other things happened and are recounted here:
Brad Lidge, erstwhile Phillies closer, goes to the DL with a sprained knee. I first saw this on a twitter post by Will Carroll, who writes the Under the Knife articles for Baseball Prospectus. Carroll’s comment suggested that the injury was his pitching and the knee is a convenient DL excuse. If you have Lidge on your fantasy roster, look for Ryan Madson to get save opportunities. However, J.C. Romero is also back from his PED suspension and might get a shot or two. Joining the Phillies is backup catcher Paul Bako. Really?
Joining Lidge on the DL is another struggling pitcher, Bartolo Colon, who also heads to the DL with a sore knee. Getting a shot is the White Sox’ 2007 top pick, Aaron Poreda. Poreda has been solid in his two years and is carrying a 2.16 ERA in 10 starts with AA Birmingham. Until this year, he showed great control, a lot of strikeouts, few homers allowed, and has been ranked by Baseball America as one of the two best prospects in the ChiSox chain. He’ll start in the pen, but he COULD be a rotation fixture in the near future. I’d certainly be interested in giving him a shot.
Toronto’s Jesse Litsch, a 13 game winner last year, has been on the DL with soreness in his elbow since mid-April. Now, his season is done, as he’s heading to Dr. James Andrews for surgery. He and Shawn Marcum were solid rookie starters last year, and now both are going to be recovering from Tommy John surgery. Very sad.
Welcome back Scott Schoeneweis, who was removed from Arizona’s restricted list. Schoeneweis has been out following the stunning death of his wife several weeks back. Also returning from the bereavement list is Brewers Mark DiFelice. Heading to the bereavement list, however, is Giant first baseman Travis Ishikawa.
Nobody signed Kip Wells or Kris Benson off the waiver wire, so both got assigned to AAA. Meanwhile, Blaine Boyer is with his third major league team this year as sort of a fluke. Boyer was traded from Atlanta to St. Louis in late April. A few days ago, Boyer pitched five innings of relief for St. Louis. St. Louis, needing arms, couldn’t just send Boyer to the minors (he was out of options) so they had to ask waivers and bring up a new pitcher. Hoping he’d sneak through, it didn’t work – Arizona claimed him. So, now Boyer is a Diamondback reliever.
J. J. Putz, injured Mets reliever, had surgery to remove bone spurs. He should be back in a couple of months. The question is whether or not the wounded Mets can still be in the NL East race then.
Not sure why, but the Rays signed released reliever Jorge Julio to a minor league deal. Bad idea.
Colorado traded struggling reliever Jason Grilli to Texas for cash.