It feels as though Jake Odorizzi is routinely one of the most underappreciated pitchers in the league.
Never flashy, the 27-year-old over the past two seasons is 19-15 with a 3.53 ERA in 61 starts for the Rays. Even in his first full season with the Rays, Odorizzi still won 11 games while striking out more than a batter per inning.
We'll see just how important Odorizzi is to the Rays' rotation after he was placed on the 10-day disabled list Saturday with a left hamstring strain. Odorizzi suffered the injury in the second inning of Saturday's start against the Red Sox.
There was no indication there was going to be something," he said after Saturday's game. "I just felt it grab me a little bit, almost like an overstretched muscle. Nothing pulling, no sharper pain. A surprising grab, more shocking than anything."
And while that might suggest that Odorizzi's stay on the sideline will be a short one, the Rays will need to find someone to fill in during his absence. Chase Whitley was recalled from Triple-A Durham, and Erasmo Ramirez, who has experience starting, has been mentioned as another possibility.
Neither excites, and interesting names like Jose De Leon and Taylor Guerrieri are both dealing with injuries at the moment. The Rays and fantasy owners will instead hope for a speedy recovery from Odorizzi.
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Brewers, Dodgers Talking Braun?
The Brewers may yet have their cake and eat it, too.
After attempts at dealing Ryan Braun to the Dodgers at last year's trade deadline fell through, the club was forced to keep him and, with talks over the winter relatively quiet, make him a large part of their team in 2017, a team that isn't expected to contend for much of anything.
Braun's early success, paired with a lack of success for Dodgers left fielders in 2017, has reopened that door, though, says Jon Paul Morosi of MLB.com. Morosi reported Thursday that the teams have remained in contact about a possible trade that would send Braun to Los Angeles.
Without knowing what they would get back, any deal on which the Brewers would sign off would likely be a huge win for the organization. The Brewers boast three talented starting outfielders at present -- along with Braun in left field, they have dual threat Keon Broxton and bopper Domingo Santana starting -- and a number of the organization's best prospects -- Lewis Brinson, Corey Ray, Brett Phillips, Trent Clark -- are outfielders by trade.
Brinson is the best combination of ceiling and proximity on the list, and he would be an immediate must-add for fantasy owners on the prowl for high-upside fliers. For now, though, it's merely a situation worth monitoring.
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Semien (Wrist) Headed For More Tests
Will Marcus Semien's injury clear the way for a top prospect's call-up in Oakland?
That's the question after Semien sat out Saturday's game with what was revealed by an MRI to be a right wrist contusion. A CT scan Monday should offer more clarity on the situation and what it might mean for Semien's near future.
“Any time Marcus is out of the lineup it’s a concern because he’s a tough guy and he wants to play,” A's manager Bob Melvin said prior to Saturday's game. “He has a high threshold for pain.”
If it required a trip to the disabled list, the next question is whether the organization's top prospect, Franklin Barreto, who happens to play shortstop as well, will get the call. Barreto is just 21 years old but reached Triple-A in 2016 and is hitting .342/.409/.579 with two homers through 10 games there this season.
Of course, 21-year-olds don't often fare well in the majors, and the A's may be hesitant to put anything in motion if they're not planning on keeping Barreto in the majors for a long stretch. If nothing else, he's a name worth remembering as a member of the next wave of great young shortstops in the league.
National League Quick Hits: Logan Forsythe left Saturday's game against the Diamondbacks with right hamstring tightness. Enrique Hernandez replaced him at second base to begin the fifth inning. Forsythe was having a terrific night before his injury, going 3-for-3 with a double and a run scored. Stay tuned for an update ... Brandon Finnegan left Saturday's start against the Brewers after one inning due to a left lat strain. It's unclear how long the ailment will sideline for, but his next start is probably in jeopardy ... Gregory Polanco was scratched from the Pirates' starting lineup on Saturday due to right groin discomfort. The injury isn't believed to be serious and Polanco is considered day-to-day ... Brandon Phillips picked a good time for his first homer as a member of the Braves, as his sixth inning blast Saturday proved to be the difference in a 4-2 win over the Padres. Phillips went down to get the Clayton Richard offering, walloping it to the deepest part of the ballpark to give the Braves the lead. Despite the homer being the first in a Braves uniform for the 35-year-old, he's been a productive addition in the early going, batting .289/.357/.447 with three steals to go with the homer ... Tyler Chatwood mowed through the Giants on Saturday, allowing two hits in a complete-game, 5-0 shutout. Chatwood issued one walk and struck out four, needing an economical 105 pitches to put away a Giants lineup sans Buster Posey and Brandon Belt ... Jarrett Parker suffered a broken clavicle in Saturday’s loss to the Rockies. In layman’s terms, he broke his collarbone. Parker injured himself crashing into the wall for an incredible catch to rob D.J. LeMahieu in the fourth inning. The Giants haven’t given a timetable for his return but it’s safe to say he won’t be playing anytime soon ... Jacob deGrom allowed two earned runs, four hits and a walk with a career-high 13 strikeouts over seven innings in a no-decision Saturday in Miami ... Eric Thames smoked a pair of home runs but the Brewers still lost to the Reds on Saturday. He homered off right-hander Robert Stephenson in the third inning and went deep again off left-hander Tony Cingrani in the seventh frame. He has now homered in three games in a row. Thames is tearing the cover off the baseball back home in the USA just like he did in Korea the last few years. He is batting .382/.462/.912 with five longballs and 10 RBI already.
American League Quick Hits: Carlos Correa left Saturday’s game against the Athletics with a hand contusion. He exited after taking a pitch off his hand in the ninth inning. Correa gave fantasy owners a scare for a minute, but his X-rays came back negative and it looks like he’s just dealing with a bruise ... Twins general manager Derek Falvey said Saturday that the MRI on Brian Dozier's right knee came back clean. Dozier has been diagnosed with a right knee contusion and was presumably available off the bench on Saturday, although he wasn't needed in Ervin Santana's one-hit shutout gem ... Matt Holliday was scratched from the Yankees' starting lineup on Saturday due to lower back stiffness. The veteran slugger has a history of back issues, so with even mild stiffness the Yankees are going to take every possible precaution to not exacerbate the problem ... Jose Ramirez enjoyed a monster game against the Tigers on Saturday, finishing 4-for-4 with two home runs, six RBI and three runs scored in the Indians' 13-6 win. A pair of three-run bombs did the damage, the first off Tigers ace Justin Verlander in the first inning and then again off reliever Anibal Sanchez in the eighth. He also had a pair of singles and a walk, reaching base in all five of his plate appearances. Few are hotter than the 24-year-old, who is now 9-for-13 in his past three games.