Indians right-hander Danny Salazar is headed for what the club is calling a precautionary MRI due to discomfort in his right elbow, as MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian writes. “There’s something in my elbow,” said Salazar following a rough outing against the Twins on Monday. “I don’t know what it is. We don’t know. I think we’re going to find out tomorrow.” Manager Terry Francona said that Salazar’s elbow has been bothering him for at least a couple of weeks. Salazar had Tommy John surgery prior to making his big league debut and said the discomfort he feels in his elbow feels “totally different” than the pain he felt when he tore his ulnar collateral ligament. Nonetheless, there’s clearly some cause for concern, especially due to a recent decline in Salazar’s velocity (as Bastian highlights in his column).
A few more notes from the game’s Central divisions…
- The Royals’ decision to stand pat at yesterday’s trade deadline was a surprise to some, considering the fact that Kansas City has fallen to 50-55 and has at best a narrow window to make the postseason. General manager Dayton Moore spoke about the team’s lack of trades with Sam Mellinger of the Kansas City Star, stating that he wants to give his players a chance to “dig back out of this mess we’re in.” More interesting, perhaps, was his take on righty Edinson Volquez, who has a mutual option on his contract for the 2017 season that figures to be declined one way or another. While he wouldn’t firmly commit to the notion, Moore suggested that the team could very well make Volquez a qualifying offer at season’s end, which is projected to be worth $16.7MM, as ESPN’s Buster Olney recently reported. Said Moore of Volquez: “We’ll see. Obviously we have to evaluate that, but that’s certainly a part of our thinking.”
- The Pirates had a tough decision when determining whether the club was better-served by betting on Francisco Liriano returning to form or acquiring multiple years of Drew Hutchison and creating some financial flexibility, GM Neal Huntington explained to MLB.com’s Adam Berry. As Berry notes, the financial flexibility the Pirates gained by shedding the remaining money on Liriano’s contract will be significant in 2017 when Gerrit Cole and Tony Watson, among others, are due arbitration raises and other players signed to extensions see their salaries naturally escalate. Huntington said that the Pirates have liked Hutchison and right-hander Ivan Nova (also acquired at yesterday’s non-waiver deadline) for quite some time, adding that while it was difficult to part with outfield prospect Harold Ramirez and catching prospect Reese McGuire, the team dealt from positions of depth. Berry adds that the Bucs talked with the Rays about their starters at length but were asked for a minimum of two of their top five prospects in return — too lofty a price for Huntington’s liking.
- Reds president of baseball operations Walt Jocketty spoke with the Cincinnati Enquirer’s C. Trent Rosecrans about the difficulty of trading away a homegrown slugger like Jay Bruce even in the midst of a rebuild. “It was extremely tough to make the deal,” said Jocketty. “We’ve talked about it for some time, but until it actually happens, it doesn’t set in. …It was tough to say goodbye to him.” Reports on Monday indicated that medical concerns over one of the minor leaguers that was said to be in the initial iteration of the Bruce deal — said to be centered around outfielder Brandon Nimmo — slowed the deal. Rosecrans,though, hears that multiple prospects that would’ve come to the Reds failed to live up to the Reds’ medical standards, leading to further discussion. Jocketty also spoke a bit about Zack Cozart, who was reportedly nearly traded to Seattle, stating that Cozart isn’t someone the team is actively looking to move. Rosecrans adds that talks with the Mariners did take place but fell apart over the course of the day.