8:32pm: Castro has been cleared of any involvement in the shooting by the Dominican General of National Police, tweets Bruce Levine of 670TheScore.com.
12:53pm: Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro’s agent, Paul Kinzer, denies reports that Castro was arrested following a shooting in the Dominican Republic, Paul Sullivan and Gregory Pratt of the Chicago Tribune write. Six people were injured in the shooting, which took place at a nightclub early Saturday morning. Kinzer says Castro went to the police station voluntarily to clear his name, but police told him they had video proof that he wasn’t involved. As Sullivan notes, it’s the second time in less than a month that Castro has had to speak to police about a shooting in the Dominican — police cleared Castro in a separate incident three weeks ago. Here are more notes from around the National League.
- The Padres’ offseason trades have been offensive upgrades, but they’re worse defensively in the outfield, and they’ve also downgraded defensively at catcher, Fangraphs’ Jeff Sullivan writes for FOX Sports. Newcomers Derek Norris and Tim Federowicz are markedly worse pitch-framers than Yasmani Grandal or Rene Rivera, perhaps by as much as 20-30 runs. There is, however, still the possibility that the Padres could add a steadier framing catcher before the season starts, as their previous interest in David Ross suggests.
- Pitching coach Darren Balsley is pleased that the Padres managed to pull off their string of trades without giving up Andrew Cashner, Tyson Ross or Ian Kennedy, Jeff Sanders of the San Diego Union-Tribune writes. “To do that without giving up one of our top three starters, it’s pretty cool to say the least,” says Balsley. “I thought we’d lose one of them for sure.” Of course, the departure of Jesse Hahn in the Norris trade does leave the Padres without a clear fifth starter. Robbie Erlin, Josh Johnson, Casey Kelly, Cory Luebke, Brandon Morrow, Alex Torres and top pitching prospect Matt Wisler are all candidates for that spot.