Diamondbacks outfielder Steven Souza Jr. left the team’s game Wednesday with an apparent right shoulder injury, Richard Morin of the Arizona Republic reports. There’s no word on the severity yet, but the Diamondbacks are left to hope it’s nothing serious after acquiring Souza from the Rays last month. The 28-year-old Souza posted his best season in 2017, hitting .239/.351/.459 with 30 home runs in 617 plate appearances en route to 3.7 fWAR. If healthy, he should help make up for the D-backs’ offseason loss of outfielder J.D. Martinez, who signed with the Red Sox.
And now for the latest from the AL West…
- Rangers reliever Tim Lincecum doesn’t expect to be ready for Opening Day, which he revealed Tuesday after throwing two innings of batting practice (via TR Sullivan of MLB.com). “Doesn’t look like it,” he said. “I still have some stuff to refine. I wasn’t extremely happy with the day. I was happy with the level of work. I’ve got a lot of refining to do.” Lincecum is only two weeks removed from signing with the Rangers, and he, of course, didn’t pitch competitively at all in 2017. Tuesday’s BP session was his second since joining the Rangers, and he’ll need at least one more before potentially pitching in a minor league game.
- First baseman Chris Carter is unlikely to make the Angels, Maria Guardado of MLB.com writes. That’s not surprising, given that Carter’s a minor league signee who’s not on the Halos’ 40-man roster. Guardado notes that there’s no obvious path to playing time for Carter at first in Anaheim, which has Albert Pujols and Luis Valbuena. Plus, those two and Shohei Ohtani figure to be among their designated hitter options, taking away another potential route to the majors for Carter. The 31-year-old Carter will be able to refuse a minor league assignment if he doesn’t make the Halos, though he did spend a solid chunk of last season with the A’s Triple-A affiliate. That came just one year after the then-Brewer co-led the National League in home runs (41). Because of his dreadful 2017, which he began with the Yankees, Carter went unsigned until late February.
- Astros first baseman Yuli Gurriel, on the shelf the past few weeks because of left hand surgery, is progressing in his recovery, Brian McTaggart of MLB.com writes. He’s still likely to begin the season on the disabled list, however, according to McTaggart, and then he’ll have to serve a five-game suspension for an insensitive gesture directed at then-Dodgers pitcher Yu Darvish in last year’s World Series. The Astros are likely to use Marwin Gonzalez at first in Gurriel’s absence, and J.D. Davis and Tyler White are currently fighting for a backup role. “It’s 1A and 1B, it’s not like one is separating themselves from the other. Eventually, we’ll have to make a decision,” manager A.J. Hinch said of Davis and White on Wednesday (via Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle).