Veteran righty Craig Stammen is interested in returning to the Padres next season, Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. “I really like it in San Diego,” says Stammen, who signed with the Padres last winter after missing most of the previous two seasons to injury. “They showed me quite a bit of loyalty at the beginning of the season when I was struggling. They could’ve gotten rid of me really quick. But they stuck with me, they gave me a chance. (Manager Andy Green has) been great with me, allowed me to work back this year and get put in different situations.” The 33-year-old Stammen allowed 11 runs in 11 2/3 innings in April but has quietly been terrific since then, with a 2.14 ERA and 60 strikeouts in 63 innings since. He’s eligible for free agency this winter and should attract serious interest on the open market — assuming, that is, that he doesn’t re-up with the Padres. Here’s more from the West divisions.
- The Athletics installed Matt Olson at first base after dealing Yonder Alonso to Seattle last month and have gotten great results so far, as Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle notes. Olson has 17 homers in just 47 big-league games so far this year. The lefty-swinging Olson’s performance so far has suggested he doesn’t need much platoon help, either — three of his homers have come against lefties, including one today against Houston’s Tony Sipp. Olson was a former first-round pick and top prospect whose star faded somewhat after a mediocre 2016 with Triple-A Nashville, but after strong performances in both Nasvhille and Oakland this year, he appears to be very much back on the map. “Olson looks like the real deal,” says a rival scout, via Slusser. “I’ve been impressed with how he’s gotten on some pitches in the upper zone.”
- Angels righty Alex Meyer already knows his 2017 is over, but also must deal with uncertainty about his future after losing the last two months of the season to shoulder inflammation, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register writes. Meyer isn’t yet sure if surgery might help him, and he doesn’t yet know if he might have to move to the bullpen to stay healthy. Meyer has been dogged by shoulder issues at various points throughout his pro career, but managed to avoid the DL in 2015, when he mostly pitched in the bullpen in the Twins’ system. “I don’t know if there’s a correlation, but I can’t say there’s not,” he says. Meyer posted a 3.74 ERA, 10.0 K/9 and 5.6 BB/9 over 13 starts and 67 1/3 innings in the big leagues this season.