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Orioles' Brian Matusz tosses scoreless inning in return


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12:09 am ET) Orioles pitcher Brian Matusz tossed a scoreless inning in his return to the mound.

Matusz came into camp dealing with a shoulder issue, but said he was pretty close to 100 percent. He allowed one hit during his one inning of work, and struck out one batter. Matusz is expected to open the season in the team's bullpen. 

The 28-year-old posted a 3.48 ERA over 51 2/3 innings last year.


Rays' Alex Colome still not in camp


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(3/5/2015) Rays pitcher Alex Colome still hasn't reported to camp due to a visa issue, according to the Tampa Tribune.

Colome was a candidate for the fifth spot in the team's rotation, at least until Matt Moore was able to return from Tommy John surgery. He's been able to put in work at the club's facility in the Domincan Republic, and manager Kevin Cash doesn't want to rule him out just yet. 

"Colome is getting his work in. We know that. We’ve had communication on that," Cash said. "As I’ve said the whole time, we’d like to have him here. I don’t think it’s fair to punish a guy for being held up, so he’s still very much a factor."

Colome, 26, posted a 2.66 ERA over 23 2/3 innings last year. 


Tolleson, Feliz, Scheppers likely to make Rangers


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(3/5/2015) The Rangers are likely to put Shawn Tolleson, Neftali Feliz and Tanner Scheppers in the bullpen this season, according to the Dallas Morning News.

Manager Jeff Banister implied that all three players would make the team out of camp. That's not necessarily a surprise for Tolleson, who led the team in relief appearances last year, but both Feliz and Scheppers had been mentioned as fringe candidates thus far. 


Twins' Michael Tonkin hoping to catch on with the club


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(3/5/2015) Twins pitcher Michael Tonkin is hoping to break camp on the 25-man roster, according to MLB.com.

Tonkin has been up and down the past two seasons, but is competing for a bullpen spot this spring. He has one option year left on his contract, but he's hoping he can break camp with the major-league club.

"It would be huge," Tonkin said. "It's a pretty important year for me. Just the business side of it, having just one option left. It's important to show them I can be a big leaguer. I feel like I'm ready."

Tonkin, 25, posted a 4.74 ERA over 19 innings last season. 


Mariners place Edgar Olmos back on the 40-man roster


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(3/5/2015) Mariners pitcher Edgar Olmos has been placed on the team's 40-man roster, according to MLB.com.

Olmos went over to the Rangers briefly, but was sent back to the Mariners after it was revealed he had a shoulder issue. Olmos will replace Ji-Man Choi on the 40-man roster.


White Sox's Jesse Crain close to facing hitters


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(3/5/2015) White Sox pitcher Jesse Crain is getting close to facing hitters, according to MLB.com.

Crain is coming back from shoulder and biceps injuries, but will throw his third bullpen session on Friday. If that goes well he could throw live batting practice next week. 

"It's exciting and I've been feeling really well, but in the meantime, I'm not going to get too high until I get out there," Crain said. "When I face hitters, it will be a good test, because I'll be letting it go even more than I have. I'll wait to get too excited until I know exactly how I feel." 

Crain admitted he's taking things slow, but he's hoping to get into games this spring. "I'm not going to put any timetables on anything," he said. "But if I keep progressing like I am, there's a good chance I can hopefully get into a couple or few games."


Tigers' Bruce Rondon to throw live batting practice on Friday


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(3/5/2015) Tigers reliever Bruce Rondon will throw live batting practice on Friday, according to mlive.com.

Rondon is on schedule in his recovery from Tommy John surgery, according to manger Brad Ausmus. "His schedule was behind what the others were, so he's on schedule," Ausmus said. "We were going to take it slower with him regardless."

While he's on schedule, Rondon still has a lot of work to do. "First, he's got to get comfortable throwing to hitters," Ausmus said. "He's not quite there yet. Then, once we get him into games, we have to get him into back-to-back days. I would imagine that would be toward the end though."

The 24-year-old Rondon posted a 3.45 ERA over 28 2/3 innings in 2013. 


Indians SP Carlos Carrasco throws in 'B' game Thursday


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/5/2015) Indians starting pitcher Carlos Carrasco threw two innings in a "B" game against the Reds on Thursday morning. Pitching coach Mickey Callaway was pleased with what he saw from the right-handed pitcher.

"He had a good tempo. He wasn't overdoing it," Callaway said, per MLB.com. "The thing that worried me coming into spring was we talked about intent and letting it go and pitching like you're out of the 'pen. Well, we don't want him doing that right now. We don't want him averaging 97 yet. He did a really good job of controlling his effort level."


Lance Berkman helps Astros' Gregerson on approach vs. LH batters


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/5/2015) Astros pitching coach Brent Strom had reliever Luke Gregerson meet with retired MLB slugger Lance Berkman to get a better idea on how left-handed batters view Gregerson's sinker, per MLB.com.

"Everything's always helpful when you get to talk to someone who has such success as a hitter," Gregerson said. "From a pitcher's standpoint, it's interesting to hear what gets in your head and what messes with them as a hitter and what keeps them off balance. Hopefully, it's something that I can transition to the mound against other guys down the road."

Berkman, who spent three days in Astros' camp as a guest instructor, liked hitting against sinkerball pitchers during his career, so he had a lot of wisdom to share with Gregerson, who is competing for the closer's role.

"You always hear lefties are low-ball hitters and most lefties don't want balls in on their hands or anything on the inside part of the plate," Berkman said. "Generally with sinkerballers, that's where they're trying to throw it, is down and out over the plate.

"Those are fun conversations to have, because then there's back and forth. It's a cat-and-mouse game all over again. That's the part of the game I really enjoyed."


Royals P Tim Collins (elbow) to have MRI on Thursday


by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(3/5/2015) Royals pitcher Tim Collins is scheduled to undergo an MRI on his sore elbow Thursday, according to MLB.com

Collins left Wednesday's game against the Rangers after experiencing tightness in his elbow. Kansas City won the game 13-2. Though further testing will take place, Collins expressed optimism about the injury. 

"I think it's just spring training," Collins said. "Everybody goes through this. It's just some tightness. I don't know what the plan is yet with the trainers."


Orioles' Brian Matusz expected to throw one inning Thursday


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/5/2015) Orioles pitcher Brian Matusz, who received a cortisone injection in his right shoulder Monday due to an AC joint sprain, will work one inning during Thursday's split squad game against the Blue Jays, according to manager Buck Showalter. He is slated to start March 14 against the Rays.

Michael Kirkman reported normal soreness after 'pen session


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(3/5/2015) Rangers pitcher Michael Kirkman felt normal soreness from his bullpen session on Wednesday, according to the Star-Telegram. Kirkman, who has been working his way back from an impingement on his throwing shoulder, will need a few more bullpen sessions before he sees any game action this spring.

Yankees eye Esmil Rogers in role of long reliever/spot starter


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/5/2015) Yankees manager Joe Girardi said Thursday he would like Esmil Rogers to fill the role David Phelps had in 2014 as a long reliever and spot starter, per ESPN.

"We think he’s got good stuff," Girardi said. "It’s learning how to use it and become more consistent. He’s got velocity, he’s got a good breaking ball, he's got a changeup. He has the ability to pitch. We feel he can do a lot of different things. He gives us a lot of flexibility, which is good. We like having that on our pitching staff, because you never know when something’s going to pop up." 


Rangers' Alexander Claudio hoping to earn a role


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(3/5/2015) Rangers pitcher Alexander Claudio is hoping to be the team's lefty in the bullpen, according to the Dallas Morning News.

Claudio is one of three lefties in camp competing for the job. He performed well in his first taste of spring training, retiring two lefties during his inning of work. He allowed one hit, and struck out two batters. While Claudio's fastball barely registers on the radar gun, manager Jeff Banister still came away impressed.

"I like the secondary stuff," Banister said. "He's accepted the type of pitcher he is and is willing to be that guy. He’s really intriguing with the kind of deception he brings."

Claudio posted a 2.92 ERA over 12 1/3 innings last season.


Twins' Jose Berrios strikes out four on Wednesday


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(3/4/2015) Twins starter Jose Berrios struck out four during his first spring appearance on Wednesday.

Berrios took on the University of Minnesota, and turned in a good showing. While Berrios is a minor-leaguer, he's only 20, and was taking on players his age. Berrios allowed one hit and one unearned run over two innings of work. He struck out four batters.

Berrios is the team's third-best prospect according to Baseball America. He's expected to begin the year in the minors, but could move quickly based on how well he performs. 


Yankees' Andrew Miller 'happy' with scoreless inning Wednesday


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(3/4/2015) Yankees pitcher Andrew Miller made his Grapefruit League debut wednesday, giving up one hit in a scoreless inning against the Phillies while striking out two.

"I'm really happy with the way I was throwing the ball," Miller said after the outing, per MLB.com. "I'm not too concerned with things right now. It could have been absolutely horrendous and there's nothing to worry about. It's just going out there and getting it going. I felt my breaking ball was really good, so it's always nice to come back and realize it's still there after the offseason."

Miller signed a four-year, $36-million deal with the Yankees this offseason after going 5-5 with a 2.02 ERA and 103:17 K:BB ratio in 62 1/3 innings.


Rays sign Jim Miller to minor-league deal


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(3/4/2015) The Rays have signed pitcher Jim Miller to a minor-league deal, according to SBNation.

Miller will report to major-league spring training as part of the contract. The 32-year-old tossed just 2 2/3 innings in the majors last season. 


Angels, Huston Street to exchange offers soon


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(3/4/2015) The Angels and reliever Huston Street are expected to exchange offers soon, according to MLB.com.

Both sides are interested in a possible extension, but Street wanted to wait until some time had passed once camp started to begin negotiations. Street does not have an agent, and will represent himself during talks. 

"I treat it just as if I'm negotiating a real-estate lease in Austin -- don't waste my time," Street said. "Either we're moving towards a direction, towards a point, or we're not."

The 31-year-old posted a 1.37 ERA over 59 1/3 innings last year. He's set to make $7 million in the final year of his current deal.


White Sox pitcher Zach Putnam misses Wednesday with illness


by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(3/4/2015) White Sox relief pitcher Zach Putnam was held out of Wednesday's game against the Dodgers with a stomach ailment, reports MLB.com.

Putnam, who is also dealing with a back injury during spring training, went 5-3 in 2014 with a 1.98 ERA and 46 strikeouts in 54 2/3 innings pitched.


Royals' Tim Collins dealing with elbow soreness


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(3/4/2015) Royals reliever Tim Collins is dealing with elbow soreness, according to the Kansas City Star.

Collins will head for an MRI on Wednesday in order to determine the severity of the injury. The team won't have a timetable for Collins until they receive the results of the MRI. 

The 25-year-old posted a 3.86 ERA over 21 innings last year.


Astros' Vincent Velasquez still unable to throw off mound


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(3/4/2015) Astros pitcher Vincent Velasquez has yet to throw off a mound, according to MLB.com.

Velasquez is dealing with a lat injury, and was expected to miss 2-3 weeks. He has not thrown off a mound yet, and could require more time before he's ready to return to action. Velasquez is fighting for a roster spot this spring. 


Tigers' Ian Krol making a big impression in camp


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(3/4/2015) Tigers pitcher Ian Krol has impressed everyone during camp, according to mlive.com.

"He's been outstanding this spring," Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said. "Not only with his work effort, but he's the first one to the clubhouse. He's really paying attention to every part of his career right now."

That was by design. Krol worked hard in the offseason after struggled physically in 2014. "I worked extremely hard," Krol said. "Physical therapy, working out, you name it. I kicked my butt in the offseason. I was just determined."

Krol is competing for a spot in the team's bullpen this spring. The 23-year-old posted a 4.96 ERA over 32 2/3 innings last year. 


Royals' Hochevar (elbow) emerges unscathed after BP session


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/4/2015) Royals pitcher Luke Hochevar threw his first batting-practice session of the spring Tuesday and emerged from the outing without any issues, per MLB.com.

"Everything was fine this morning," Yost said. "He felt great."

Yost liked how Hochevar, who is coming off Tommy John surgery, threw in batting practice.

"A good live fastball," Yost said. "Good curve. He looked really good. Just a normal progression for him."


Orioles' Matusz on injured shoulder: 'It's almost 100 percent'


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/4/2015) Orioles reliever Brian Matusz received a cortisone injection into his right shoulder Monday to alleviate the discomfort caused by a strained AC joint, according to MASNsports.com. Matusz said he sustained the injury about six weeks ago while working out.

"It's something that hasn't affected anything on the baseball field, but in the weight room it's definitely limited things, so we decided to just go in there since it was the right shoulder and put a cortisone (injection) in there," Matusz said. "It's starting to feel better, almost 100 percent."

Matusz threw a bullpen session Tuesday and is scheduled to pitch in a game against the Blue Jays on Thursday.

"It was only done for the purposes of being able to get back in the weight room to continue my normal workout routines," he said.


Edgar Olmos headed back to Mariners due to shoulder injury


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/4/2015) The Rangers announced Wednesday the waiver claim for pitcher Edgar Olmos is being reversed due to a shoulder injury, per the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Olmos, who was claimed off waivers last week, will head back to the Mariners roster.

 
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