AL West Notes: Arencibia, Baker, Astros, Johnson

MLBTR is pleased to report that the missing portion of our archives that was lost when switching to WordPress following our DDoS attack has been restored. Previously, posts from mid-March through mid-April weren’t viewable, but everything is up to speed now. So, if you missed the details on Joel Hanrahan‘s audition for 20 teams, Sean Doolittle‘s contract extension, or George Springer‘s promotion to the Majors, all of that info is once again available. Speaking of Doolittle and Springer, here are some notes pertaining to their division…

  • Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News wonders how much longer the Rangers can carry J.P. Arencibia on their roster. The 28-year-old is hitting jus .094/.171/.156 without a homer this season, leading Grant to believe that Texas could be talking with the Padres about one of their catchers. San Diego is reportedly in active trade talks regarding Nick Hundley.
  • Rangers right-hander Scott Baker is pitching well in Triple-A (2.81 ERA in 32 innings) and has received interest from several other teams as his May 1 opt-out date approaches, reports MLB Daily Dish’s Chris Cotillo (Twitter links). Baker would only opt out of his current deal if it led to a Major League opportunity with another club, he adds. Baker’s former club, the Twins, isn’t interested in a reunion, according to reports from this past weekend.
  • The Houston Chronicle’s David Barron reports that United States Bankruptcy Judge Mavin Isgur will rule within two weeks whether he has subject matter jurisdiction to hear Astros owner Jim Crane’s lawsuit against Comcast, NBC Universal and former owner Drayton McLane. Comcast took the case federal last November because of its ties to CSN Houston’s own bankruptcy case, though Crane would like it to remain a matter for the state courts.
  • Athletics righty Jim Johnson pitched poorly enough to open the season that he lost his role as closer, but scouts expressed to Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle this weekend that Johnson looks much better than he did early in the season. One scout on Sunday told Slusser that Johnson’s sinker is as good as anyone in the game right now. With Doolittle and Gregerson failing to run with the closer’s role, Johnson could find himself back in the ninth. Fantasy baseball players can, of course, keep up with Johnson’s status and other closer-related news by following MLBTR’s @closernews on Twitter.

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