Sunday, May 10, 2009

Soria to DL, Royals call up Hochevar

According to Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star, the Kansas City Royals have placed closer Joakim Soria on the 15-day disabled list.

The move is retroactive to Friday. Soria, who has been battling soreness in his shoulder, will be out until at least May 23rd.
“It’s not going away,” he said, “so I have to take some time (off) so I’ll be ready for the rest of the season. It’s still too early in the season to be pitching like that. I think the better thing is to go on the DL, work hard on my shoulder and see what happens after 15 days.”
Luke Hochevar will take Soria's roster spot. Hochevar will start on Tuesday and Sidney Ponson will move to the bullpen.
“He’s coming off one of his best outings this year,” Hillman said, “so, hopefully, that will help our team win ballgames. We just felt this would (make) our club the strongest in … both in the rotation and in the bullpen.”
Hochevar is 5-0 with an ERA of 0.90 in six starts for Omaha this season.

Jose Contreras sent to minors

White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen has decided to send pitcher Jose Contreras to the minors.

Clayton Richard will start Wednesday in place of Contreras.

Contreras is 0-5 with an ERA of 8.19 in six games.
"Good deal,'' [Richard] said when told he would start Wednesday. "Coming up last year and my whole career has been starting, I'm comfortable with that role. Any time you get an opportunity, you want to make the most of it and hopefully go out there and do what I'm capable of - but really just put the team in a position to win.''

"His work ethic is second to none, and to see him struggling is tough,'' he said. "He'll figure it out. It's just a matter of time before he gets it clicking.''
Last year, Richard, who is 25 years old, made eight starts. This year, Richard has an ERA of 4.41 in 11 relief appearances.

The Hot Corner, 5/10 (PM) edition

Mets manager Jerry Manuel, who was suspended for yesterday's game, enjoyed the view from the sky box with GM Omar Minaya and Jeff Wilpon. "It was a good game to watch," Manuel said Sunday morning. "It's a spectacular view they got up there. It was nice, very nice. The ballpark looks completely different up there."

Dodgers owner Frank McCourt is furious with Manny Ramirez, who was suspended for 50 games for violating the league's policy on performance-enhancing drugs. McCourt has demanded that Ramirez speak to the team.

Rick Morrissey of the Chicago Tribune asks whether Cubs first baseman Derrek Lee deserves to be booed in early May?

From now on, the Florida Marlins will play in Landshark Stadium - not Dolphins Stadium - due to its partnership with Jimmy Buffett, who owns Land Shark Lager.

Royals closer Joakim Soria has soreness in his right shoulder.

As Mark Feinsand of the Daily News points out, it's too bad Yankees starter Joba Chamberlain couldn't start every game in the second inning. Joba had another rough first inning, after which he settled down.

Astros pitcher Roy Oswalt got his first win of the season as the 'Stros swept their series with the San Diego Padres.

The New York Metropolitans have now won seven straight games with their 8-4 win over the Pirates.

The Houston Astros have re-signed second baseman Jason Smith after designating him for assignment on May 6th.

Detroit Tigers 20-year-old pitcher Rick Porcello had his second strong outing in a row by only allowing one run in five innings against the Indians.

Joe Saunders says A-Rod's All-Star days are "over"

Los Angeles Angels pitcher Joe Saunders is no fan of Alex Rodriguez (or Manny Ramirez).

Of A-Rod's future as an All-Star, "it's over for him," Saunders said.
"I think the fans do care," Saunders said. "Pretty much everybody wants a game without cheating."
Perhaps with Evan Longoria being as good as he is and many fans (and Saunders) hating A-Rod, the days of A-Rod being penciled in during spring training as the A.L. All-Star starting third baseman may be over.

But the number of players that have "cheated" the game is too large to single out specific players. A-Rod will be an All-Star in 2010.

Zimmerman hit streak at 27 games

Entering last night's game against the Arizona Diamondbacks, Washington Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman had a 26-game hitting streak.

After getting no hits in his first three at bats, Zimmerman hit a solo home run for his fourth at bat (eighth inning).

The Nationals won 2-1 and have now won four of their last five games.

Zimmerman will look to extend his hitting streak to 28 games at 4:10 p.m. ET today.

Forty-two players have hit safely in 30+ consecutive games, fifteen players have hit safely in 35+ consecutive games and only six players have hit safely in 40+ consecutive games. Of course, the record was set by Joe DiMaggio (56) in 1941.

The Hot Corner, 5/10 (AM) edition

The Yankees have called up reliever Brett Tomko and manager Joe Girardi "would not be afraid to use him in the late innings," according to the New York Post.

Per Jon Paul Morosi of the Detroit Free Press, Miguel Cabrera is becoming more of a vocal leader this year than he was last year.

Phillies closer Brad Lidge hasn't had a save opportunity since April 25th. "Being two weeks since my last save opportunity, I've almost got to tell myself, 'It's a one-run lead. Pitch like it,' " Lidge said.

"He's one of those guys, when he comes in and says, 'I can't go,' you look for a bone sticking out," [Marlins manager Fredi] Gonzalez says of Jorge Cantu. "This guy likes to play the game. He's in there. On this team if you're thinking about not playing because you have a headache, you'd better check on Cantu."

Marlins pitcher Josh Johnson beat the Rockies 3-1 despite a being "terrible" in the bullpen before the game. "I probably threw 10 strikes out of 35 [pitches]. … My slider was OK. I went with my fastball and changeup. I just tried to throw fastballs down in the zone and get first-pitch strikes. I was 21 for 30 on first-pitch strikes. That's a big goal of mine, and no walks. It was a good day."

Astros pitcher Roy Oswalt hopes to avoid a career-worst eight-game streak without a win when he faces the San Diego Padres today.

White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen will decide pitcher Jose Contreras' fate after a bullpen session this morning. Guillen told Contreras: "'You're not supposed to be here right now. You were supposed to be here in July, August. Just take something positive out of the negative. You should still be in rehab.' Hopefully, his mind is clear. We'll see what happens."

Blue Jays manager Cito Gaston called the mechanics of Alex Rios "a mess."

Girardi blames Hughes' poor outing on mechanics

Yankees "can't-miss" pitching prospect Phil Hughes couldn't get anyone out last night. While that's an exaggeration (he got five hitters out), he allowed eight earned runs in the process.

Why did Hughes pitch so poorly?

Yankees manager Joe Girardi says it was due to poor mechanics (dropping his arm slot and pushing the ball).
"The talent is there," Girardi said. "We just have to make an adjustment."

"For some reason or another, it just popped up tonight," Hughes said. "You've gotta find a way to get through it," he said.

"You still have to figure he'll put it all together eventually," said one AL scout at Saturday night's game. "But he's had enough things happen that maybe you have to wonder if it's more than the normal bumps in the road."
In three starts since getting called back up, Hughes has pitched six innings, four innings and now 1 2/3 innings. After allowing no runs in his first outing, he has allowed 11 runs in his past two.

Joba's start in jeopardy due to thumb

New York Yankees pitcher Joba Chamberlain broke a blood vessel in his right thumb last night and his scheduled start against the Baltimore Orioles on Mother's Day is in jeopardy, according to the Daily News.

He hurt his thumb during batting practice yesterday while throwing a ball back underhanded towards the infield.

If Joba can't pitch, the Yankees will use Alfredo Aceves.
"We don't think it will be an issue (Sunday), but we had to protect ourselves," [manager Joe] Girardi said. "If he can't go, Ace would be the guy."
In five starts, Chamberlain is 1-1 with an ERA of 3.77.

Manny Ramirez, a role model?

Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle wrote yesterday that all things related to suspended Dodger Manny Ramirez seemed to disappear at Dodger Stadium.

In today's column by Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, Ramirez is allowed to be around the team and that the Dodgers "hope" that Ramirez "sticks with the team, goes on road trips, and remains supportive."

They consider Ramirez a "role model" when it comes to work ethic for young hitters Matt Kemp and James Loney.

On the season, Kemp is batting .287 with four home runs, 23 runs batted in and eight stolen bases. Loney is hitting .278 and has yet to hit a home run, but he has 21 RBIs.