Yovani Gallardo threw a bullpen session this morning, the first time he has thrown off a mound since hitting the DL a month ago with shoulder tendinitis. Gallardo and Orioles manager Buck Showalter told reporters (including MLB.com’s Fabian Ardaya) that the righty could toss another bullpen and then a simulated game later this week, though much will depend on how Gallardo is feeling in the wake of today’s session. Here’s more from around the AL East…
- Erasmo Ramirez has been a boon to the Rays in an old-school “fireman” relief role, able to pitch multiple innings at any point late in a game. R.J. Anderson of CBSSports.com explores why Ramirez has been an ideal fit for this role and how the Rays’ usage of the righty could inspire other teams to turn their own relievers into firemen.
- It looks like the Red Sox made a mistake in letting Rich Hill get away in free agent last winter given how the veteran has pitched since joining the A’s, Peter Gammons writes in his latest GammonsDaily.com piece. With the A’s struggling and Hill standing out as possible deadline trade bait, Gammons suggests the Sox could re-acquire Hill to bolster the back half of their rotation.
- The Hill-to-Boston scenario is also explored by ESPN’s Buster Olney in his latest subscription-only column, and he also opines that Yankees setup man Andrew Miller would be a great fit for the Giants. Miller is signed through 2018 so San Francisco would gain a long-term bullpen piece to guard against any of all of their top relievers (Santiago Casilla, Javier Lopez, Sergio Romo) leaving in free agency this winter. Miller’s availability could depend on whether or not the Yankees are still in a pennant race themselves, though Olney notes that New York has enough elite bullpen depth to shop Miller or Aroldis Chapman even if the club is in contention.
- In other AL East news from earlier today, the Blue Jays have made Drew Storen available and the Red Sox are prepared to spend on midseason upgrades if necessary.