We have a big shindig at the house today, so this one will be short. Friday afternoon and evening brought us plenty of injury news, a trade and a closer losing his job.
Chase Utley will begin a rehab assignment on Saturday and could return to the Phillies on Tuesday. He is returning about two weeks sooner than expected.
Ryan Howard could return from the DL next week as well, as long as he can run without pain on Saturday. He could go on a brief rehab assgnment as well. The Phils are smelling blood with the Braves losing Chipper Jones, and need Howard and Utley in their lineup after getting shutout on Friday night.
The Dodgers have removed Jonathan Broxton from the closer role and replaced him with Hong-Chi Kuo. Kuo should be picked up in all leagues, but remember he may not be able to go on back to back days, so if Octavio Dotel is available, try to grab him as well. I don't see this as a long term move by the Dodgers, but it was needed as Broxton has not pitched well since that 48 pitch blown save against the Yankees back in late June.
Speaking of the Dodgers, Kenley Jansen could be considered for the closers role come September should the removal of Broxton be more of a long term move. Jansen is a feel good story as he has been pitching for only one year, after switching from catcher last summer.
The Dodgers announced that Rafael Furcal may not return from the DL when he is eligible next week. Why push him when he is signed for next year and you are out of the race, right?
Manny Ramirez could begin a rehab assignment next week, and there is a very good chance he will be dealt by the August 31 trade deadline.
Braves infielder Martin Prado felt pain in his pinkie finger while taking batting practice on Friday. Tough news for the Braves coupled with the news on Chipper Jones on Thursday. This will delay Prado's rehab assignment for sure.
How long before Marlins outfielder Mike Stanton moves up in the batting order. He hit 2 HRs and doubled on Friday night, and now has 14 HRs, and 30 extra base hits in less than 200 at bats. Thats 40 HR pace for a full season. As a 20 year old!
The Reds will call up starter Homer Bailey to start on Sunday. He has pitched well in his rehab of late.
The Giants traded for Jose Gulllen on Friday. Why?