Angels righty Garrett Richards completed his remarkable return to the major league hill, but he had to leave early with what has been diagnosed initially as a biceps cramp, as Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports. The club says that the fireballing righty was pulled for “precautionary reasons,” and Richards says that “everything’s fine” with his elbow. For the time being, at least, he won’t even undergo an MRI; indications are that he could be able to take his next scheduled start.
- Speaking of Richards, you’ll want to read the interesting piece that Moura penned recently regarding his stem-cell therapy to treat a partially torn UCL. Taking that course rather than electing surgery is perhaps not as unique as is publicly known, the article explains, with other players quietly undergoing the treatment during the offseason. It wasn’t an easy call, explains Angels team doctor Steve Yoon, but the combined approach has led to “dramatic” improvement in his ligament.
- Angels fans will also want to take a look at Moura’s excellent look back at how the organization landed Mike Trout in the 2009 draft. Richards went to Los Angeles in the same draft, as did a host of other major leaguers. But landing Trout with the 25th choice was one of the greatest heists in Rule 4 history.
- The Diamondbacks are lining up a significant investment in their operations in the Dominican Republic, as Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reports. CEO Derrick Hall explains that investing in a facility — either through renovation or new construction — could help the team draw quality youngsters under the new international spending rules, which won’t allow organizations to exceed their pool allocations.
- Diamondbacks prospect Domingo Leyba is slated to miss about two months of action with “a small tear” in the anterior capsule of his right shoulder, Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reports (Twitter links). Leyba, who came to Arizona as a part of the three-team deal that also delivered Robbie Ray, with the D-Backs sacrificing Didi Gregorius, is considered one of the organization’s top prospects. The 21-year-old infielder put up solid numbers last year at the High-A and Double-A levels after a disappointing 2015 campaign. Over 548 total plate appearances, he slashed .296/.355/.429 with ten home runs.