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Giants manager Gabe Kapler said Sunday that Pablo Sandoval has "demonstrated he's healthy."

Jul 05   7:23 PM

Sandoval showed up to summer camp in San Francisco packing a good amount of additional weight, to put it somewhat sensitively, but Kapler noted that he is not designed to be a leadoff man and looks like "a good DH candidate." Sandoval won't have much time before the season to improve his physical condition.

Updating a previous item, it has not been confirmed that Giovanny Gallegos tested positive for COVID-19.

Jul 05   7:23 PM

Ben Frederickson of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch had written in a column Sunday that Gallegos was among the positive diagnoses in the Cardinals' player pool, but the column has since been updated with that part taken out. All that is known for sure is that Gallegos remains in his native Mexico as summer camp workouts get underway at Busch Stadium. It's easy to connect the dots as to why he wouldn't be allowed to travel at the moment.

According to Ben Frederickson of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Giovanny Gallegos has tested positive for COVID-19.

Jul 05   7:07 PM

Cardinals president John Mozeliak said Friday that Gallegos was still in his native Mexico, and he'll presumably have to continue quarantining there until he returns two straight negative COVID-19 test results in line with MLB's intake testing protocol. The 28-year-old seemed like a good candidate for saves this season in St. Louis with Jordan Hicks still working his way back from Tommy John surgery. Carlos Martinez and Alex Reyes, a couple of other options at closer, are also absent from summer camp workouts in St. Louis.

Ross Stripling said Sunday that he'll be ready to go six innings at the start of the season.

Jul 05   6:51 PM

Stripling is a prime candidate to fill the rotation vacancy left by David Price's decision to opt out of playing this year, though the Dodgers figure to play to their depth and use multiple arms for the spot. Stripling, 30, had a 3.71 ERA, 1.147 WHIP, and 93/20 K/BB ratio in 90 2/3 innings (15 starts, 17 relief appearances) last season.

Jed Lowrie declined to reveal the exact nature of his leg injury during a Zoom call with reporters on Sunday.

Jul 05   6:51 PM

Lowrie said he didn't want "create any distractions" by revealing the diagnosis. It's been clear for a while that he's been hobbled by more than just the knee issue that required a surgical repair last year. He's trying out different leg braces that will hopefully allow him to contribute in some capacity this season. Lowrie, 36, has appeared in just nine games for the Mets since being inked to a two-year, $20 million deal in January 2019.

Carlos Rodon (elbow) threw a three-inning simulated game on Sunday.

Jul 05   6:33 PM

Rodon had an uncertain timetable this spring after undergoing Tommy John surgery last May, but the COVID-19 shutdown has allowed him time to work to full strength. The 27-year-old left-hander is presumably in the running for a rotation spot at summer camp with the White Sox, though he could be worked back in as a long reliever. Many teams could carry more than five starters and a number of mop-up types.

A.J. Pollock is not yet at summer camp with the Dodgers.

Jul 05   6:33 PM

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said Sunday evening that he expects Pollock to arrive soon. It may be a hold-up with the COVID-19 intake testing process. Pollock projects to serve as the primary left fielder this season in Los Angeles and will look to build on his strong second half from last season.

Yu Darvish threw his new pitch, a two-seam/splitter hybrid, during his first intrasquad game appearance on Saturday.

Jul 05   5:11 PM

Darvish is calling this new pitch "The Supreme." The veteran right-hander posted a 2.95 ERA -- and a ridiculous 124/7 K/BB ratio -- over his final 88 1/3 innings (14 starts) last season and seems well-equipped to flourish during Major League Baseball's planned 60-game 2020 campaign. He is currently going as the 17th starting pitcher off the board in the average Yahoo draft, with an overall ADP of 60.1.

Indians pitching coach Carl Willis raved about Shane Bieber's first summer camp workout on Saturday.

Jul 05   5:11 PM

“They (the hitters) can attest to it,” Willis said Sunday on a Zoom call with reporters. “He was really, really good yesterday. From a stuff standpoint, velocity-wise, pitch profiles and execution I don’t think anyone could have been more pleased with what we saw.” Bieber should be treated as top-10 starter in fantasy drafts this summer after registering a 3.28 ERA, 1.05 WHIP, and 259/40 K/BB ratio over 214 1/3 innings last year at age 24. 

Mike Clevinger (knee) has been able to successfully field his position during summer camp workouts in Cleveland, per Indians pitching coach Carl Willis.

Jul 05   5:11 PM

That's something Clevinger was not allowed to do back during spring training after he underwent surgery on February 14 to repair a partial meniscus tear in his left knee. He's back at full strength in every aspect now and has the good to be a fantasy ace during MLB's planned 60-game campaign. The 29-year-old right-hander posted a 2.71 ERA with 169 strikeouts over 126 innings (21 starts) last season.

Athletics manager Bob Melvin said Sunday that Jesus Luzardo's status is "pending."

Jul 05   4:53 PM

Word is the A's are still waiting for COVID-19 test results on a number of players in their 60-man pool, and that could be the issue here. Mike Fiers has also been absent from the first round of summer camp workouts in Oakland, and he and Luzardo spent some of the shutdown together in Florida. Luzardo carries immense fantasy upside into MLB's planned 60-game campaign given that workload should no longer be an issue.

Joe Smith has not arrived at Astros summer camp.

Jul 05   4:37 PM

Through a team spokesman, Astros manager Dusty Baker said that Smith is not in camp due to “concerns about the health and safety of his family." As a veteran reliever, Smith should be able to get properly prepared for live games with only a couple weeks of workouts, but it's unclear when (or whether) he plans to arrive in Houston. The 36-year-old right-hander was re-signed to a two-year, $8 million contract in mid-December after he registered a 1.80 ERA over 28 appearances out of Houston's bullpen last season.

Pirates manager Derek Shelton announced Sunday that Socrates Brito and Blake Cederlind have tested positive for COVID-19.

Jul 05   4:37 PM

They'll be put in quarantine and must pass two COVID-19 tests before they can join the Pirates' summer camp workouts. Brito signed a minor league contract with the Bucs back in December after spending the majority of the 2019 season with the Triple-A affiliate of the Blue Jays. Cederlind is in the player pool as relief depth.

Joe Smith is away from the Astros due to a private family matter.

Jul 05   4:18 PM

It's apparently unrelated to COVID-19. As a veteran reliever, Smith should be able to get properly prepared for live games with only a couple weeks of workouts. He was re-signed to a two-year, $8 million contract in the winter after posting a 1.80 ERA over 28 appearances out of Houston's bullpen in 2019.

Pirates manager Derek Shelton said Sunday that he's viewing Derek Holland as a starter.

Jul 05   4:18 PM

Holland was on the inside track for the final spot in the Pirates' rotation back when spring training got suspended in March, and that still appears to be the case as summer camp workouts get underway at PNC Park. Holland signed a minor league deal with the Bucs in January after struggling to a 6.08 ERA in 84 1/3 innings (eight starts, 43 relief appearances) last year between the Giants and Cubs.

Jed Lowrie (leg) was running gingerly during workouts Sunday at Citi Field.

Jul 05   4:01 PM

Mets manager Luis Rojas said Sunday morning that Lowrie was a "full go," but video of the workout suggests otherwise. The veteran infielder has taken just seven at-bats with the Mets since signing a two-year, $20 million free agent deal with the team in January 2019, and it's unclear what his status is leading into the 2020 campaign. He did recently shed his leg brace, which is maybe somewhat encouraging.

Josh James is expected to join the Astros soon.

Jul 05   4:01 PM

James has been away from the first few days of camp due to a personal matter not related to COVID-19. He'll have to be put through MLB's intake testing protocol before he can workout, so his first bullpen session might not happen until late next week. The 27-year-old might not have enough time to claim a spot in the season-opening starting rotation, though he may have been getting stretched out at home. James had 100 strikeouts in 61 1/3 innings last season, though he also finished with a 4.70 ERA and 1.32 WHIP.

James Paxton (back) threw a simulated game Sunday at Yankee Stadium.

Jul 05   3:45 PM

Lindsey Adler of The Athletic notes that Paxton did so behind an L-screen after teammate Masahiro Tanaka was hit in the head by a line drive on Saturday. Paxton is now expected to be a member of the Yankees' season-opening starting rotation after requiring a microscopic lumbar discectomy in February.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi noted Sunday that Aaron Nola (illness) and Zack Wheeler (paternity) might not be available for the start of the 2020 season.

Jul 05   3:45 PM

Nola was placed on the COVID-19 injured list on Saturday and Wheeler's wife is due to give birth right around the scheduled July 23-24 Opening Day. Hector Neris, the Phillies' likely closer, has also been absent from early workouts, though he was spotted at Citizens Bank Park on Sunday afternoon.

Amed Rosario joined the Mets' summer camp workouts on Sunday.

Jul 05   3:45 PM

Rosario was absent on Friday and Saturday, probably because he hadn't yet cleared MLB's COVID-19 testing protocol. There has been a delay at times in getting those test results. Rosario looks like a potential breakout candidate entering his age-24 campaign, though anything can happen in a 60-game schedule. He batted .287/.323/.432 with 15 home runs and 19 stolen bases in 157 games last year.

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