The Padres and Rays already announced last week’s trade, one that saw outfielders Hunter Renfroe and Tommy Pham switch homes, but some complications have arisen since then. Specifically, even though 31-year-old Pham “effectively passed a series of physicals this weekend,” per Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune, there are concerns over his right elbow. The joint kept Pham out of action for some of 2019, and according to Acee, the Padres’ medical staff still hasn’t cleared him. The trade’s currently “in limbo” as a result, writes Acee. However, Padres general manager A.J. Preller suggested Monday that it should still go through. “We’re still working through some final details but hope to have some clarity on that in the next 24 hours,” Preller said. “When we made the trade, we made the trade with the players involved. I don’t expect anything to change between now and the time we move forward. But we just have to finish the process up.”
- The Dodgers have their eyes fixed on “roughly” a dozen acquisitions, president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman told Pedro Moura of The Athetic and other reporters Monday. What’s more, Friedman indicated the already loaded Dodgers are primarily looking at elite talent. The rotation and third base have been rumored areas of interest for the Dodgers, and both spots do feature top-tier free agents (Gerrit Cole, Anthony Rendon and Josh Donaldson, for instance). Great free-agent relievers are harder to find, but upgrading there is a focus for the Dodgers. That’s their only “omnipresent” need area, Friedman observes (via Ken Gurnick of MLB.com). As of now, though, Friedman does expect Kenley Jansen to continue as the Dodgers’ closer in 2020. Formerly automatic, Jansen had a difficult year (by his standards) last season.
- The rotation-needy Giants expect to sign at least one starter to a major league contract, possibly before the Winter Meetings conclude, per Kerry Crowley of the Bay Area News Group. They at least appear to still be in the mix for their No. 1 free agent, Madison Bumgarner, whom they’ll sit down with during the meetings. While pitching’s a priority for the club, they don’t seem to be focused on picking up a backup catcher to take over for Stephen Vogt (now with the Diamondbacks), Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area suggests. Vogt’s replacement could be Aramis Garcia, to whom they’d like to give a chance, Pavlovic reports. They also have standout prospect Joey Bart waiting in the wings as the potential heir apparent to Buster Posey.
- Josh Bard will serve as the Dodgers’ bullpen coach next season, Gurnick tweets. Bard worked in that role from 2016-17 before leaving to join the Yankees’ staff as their bench coach. The Yankees and Bard parted ways after last season. The Dodgers’ previous bullpen coach was Mark Prior, who’s now their pitching coach.