A collection of links from around the National League
Federal Baseball – Matt Williams on Doug Fister’s Elbow
The Washington Nationals were expected to have a very strong rotation in 2014, and one of the reasons was the offseason acquisition of Doug Fister. However, Fister was scratched from his second Spring start with inflammation in his elbow. According to manager Matt Williams, and MRI showed no structural damage, only inflammation, so the injury is being treated with rest and medication. It isn’t clear when Fister will be able to return to action.
THe Cardinals signed third baseman Matt Carpenter to a six-year extension yesterday, indicating that he will be part of the core that the team will attempt to win with in the next few years. Carpenter joins Yadier Molina, Adam Wainright, Allen Craig, and Matt Holliday as players whom the Cards have offered long-term extensions to in the past couple of years. Those five players will all be under club control for the next four years, and the Cardinals feel confident that they will be a solid core to build around.
ESPN.com – Hanley Ramirez Must Make an Impact
Hanley Ramirez may be the Dodgers most indispensible player, and the team is counting on him to provide not only offense and defense, but also leadership this season. In the short-term, Ramirez is only concerned with staying healthy – something he has not always been able to do. In the long-term, Ramirez has to wonder about what team he’ll be playing for and what position he’ll be playing at. He’ll be a free agent at season’s end, and many scouts think his days as a shortstop may be numbered.
Call to the Pen – Diamondbacks Add Oliver Perez to Bullpen
The Diamondbacks have signed left-handed reliever Oliver Perez to a two-year contract. Formerly a starter, Perez experienced a bit of a career revival the past two seasons as a reliever with the Mariners. In 2013, he was much more effective against lefties than righties, and it is possible he ends up serving as a lefty specialist for the Diamondbacks, since none of the other candidates for that job have been especially impressive.
Tags: Philadelphia Phillies