Here’s the latest from the NL West…
- Service time considerations could play a role in the Padres’ Opening Day roster decisions on Luis Perdomo and Manuel Margot on the Opening Day roster, Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune writes. Perdomo, a Rule 5 Draft pick last offseason, clocked a full year of MLB service time in 2016, posting a 5.71 ERA, 6.4 K/9, 2.28 K/BB rate and a whopping 59% grounder rate over 146 2/3 innings. Margot, one of the game’s top prospects, had a 12-day cup of coffee in the bigs last season. Keeping both Perdomo and Margot in the minors for a few weeks to begin 2017 would allow the Padres to gain an extra year of control over both players. In Margot’s case, the extra minor league seasoning could be necessary since Margot has missed the last two weeks of camp with a knee injury.
- Jimmy Rollins is off to a slow start in the Giants’ camp, with just three hits in his first 26 at-bats for an ungainly .113 average. Despite the lack of production thus far, the veteran infielder tells Andrew Baggarly of the Bay Area News Group that he isn’t yet feeling a crunch to perform given his non-roster status. “I’d love to start driving some balls. But pressure? No, it’s not pressure. You start doing that, then you’re really starting to go the wrong way,” Rollins said. As Baggarly notes, Rollins’ performance is somewhat difficult to evaluate since he appeared in only 41 games last season and none after June 8, so “the Giants must determine whether Rollins’ lack of results is due to diminished skills or whether he’s a veteran who needs a little extra time to regain his stroke.” Rollins gave no hints as to how he would proceed in his career if he didn’t make the Opening Day roster.
- Andre Ethier will undergo an MRI on his back on Monday, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts told reporters (including Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register). Ethier has been bothered by lower back stiffness over the last two weeks and, since this is an unfamiliar injury for the veteran outfielder, Roberts said the club will “take it slow” in giving Ethier time to recover. Ethier played just 16 games last season due to a broken leg, and he is entering his last guaranteed year under contract with L.A. He needs at least 550 plate appearances for his $17.5MM option to vest for 2018, and while that much playing time may have been questionable anyway given the crowded Dodgers outfield, a significant back injury would certainly put it out of reach.