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Scott White chat transcript (3/20)

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Player News
Red Sox SP Kelly on spring debut: 'I know what I need to work on'
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:04 pm ET) Red Sox starting pitcher Joe Kelly surrendered four earned runs on seven hits in 1 2/3 innings in his spring debut Thursday, striking out two and walking none.

"Stuff wasn't as crisp as it usually is," Kelly said after his outing. "88 mile fastball, don't think I've done that since I was 13. I know what I need to work on. ... I threw 44 pitches, will look to build up to 100 pitches. I'm not going to beat myself up. Will watch some video, work on things. ... Four-seam not as crisp as I would like. Just not there yet, but that will come. I threw all four pitches today, that's a plus."

Kelly said during the offseason that he planned on winning the AL Cy Young Award in 2015. He went 6-4 with a 4.20 ERA and 66:42 K:BB ratio in 96 1/3 innings between the Cardinals and Red Sox last season.


P Yoan Lopez to make debut for Diamondbacks on Saturday
by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(9:03 pm ET) Diamondbacks pitcher Yoan Lopez will make his spring training debut this Saturday, according to MLB.com. 

The 21-year-old Cuban right-hander is competing for a spot in Arizona's rotation this spring. Lopez signed a deal that included a signing bonus of over $8 million. 


Twins' Michael Tonkin hoping to catch on with the club
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(9:03 pm ET) 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. 


Black: Shawn Kelley 'brings talent' to Padres bullpen
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(8:56 pm ET) Padres pitcher Shawn Kelley was traded to San Diego this offseason, and manager Bud Black spoke Thursday about the talent and experience the lefty brings to the Padres bullpen, U-T San Diego reports.

"You've got some guys now who are starting to get some tenure, some experience, in (Dale) Thayer and (Nick) Vincent and (Kevin) Quackenbush," Black said. "Shawn brings a little bit of that service time, but more importantly, he brings talent. He's got a good arm, he's got a good, live fastball, he's got a good slider, he's pitched at the backend of bullpens, he's been around some good closers, he's been in good bullpens."

Kelley threw his slider 57.7 percent of the time last season, second among all qualified relievers, but has confidence throwing his pitches in any situation.

"I have no problem throwing both pitches (fastball and slider) of the plate, up and down to lefties," Kelley said. "I think with the advanced scouting reports and all the information we have, every lefty has at least one hole or two against a righty, and I feel like I have something I'm comfortable doing to match that. ... I'll do whatever I have to do to exploit a lefty's weakness."

Set to become a free agent after the season, Kelley went 3-6 with a 4.53 ERA and 67:20 K:BB ratio in 51 2/3 innings with the Yankees last season.


Diamondbacks encouraged by Yasmany Tomas
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(8:54 pm ET) The Diamondbacks were encouraged by Yasmany Tomas' play at third on Thursday, according to azcentral.com.

Tomas didn't make every play, but was able to convert on five of his six chances at the hot corner. Manager Chip Hale said the team was "encouraged" by what Tomas showed during the game. 

Hale also complimented Tomas at the plate, even though the infielder doesn't have a hit yet this spring. "He's much lighter on his feet than you would think he is," Hale said. "Even running down the line, he doesn't get hits every time but when he hits it, he hustles down the line and looks like he can get down there pretty good."

Tomas is attempting to win the third base job during camp. He's expected to open the year in the majors even if the team converts him back to the outfield. 


Mariners designate Ji-Man Choi for assignment
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(8:46 pm ET) The Mariners have designated first baseman Ji-Man Choi for assignment on Thursday, according to MLB.com.

Choi fractured his fibula during Wednesday's game, and is expected to miss 4-6 weeks. He will be replaced by Edgar Olmos on the 40-man roster. 


Dodgers P Clayton Kershaw pitches two perfect innings Thursday
by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(8:40 pm ET) Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw's first spring training game had him retire all six batters he faced in two innings. 

In Thursday's 6-1 win over the White Sox, Kershaw recorded three strikeouts. 

"It felt good. The first one is just good to get out there and make sure you feel good physically," Kershaw said, via the Associated Press. "The results are obviously something that you look for, but maybe not the most important thing.


Mariners place Edgar Olmos back on the 40-man roster
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(8:38 pm ET) 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.


Braves sign Peter Moylan to minor-league deal
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(8:23 pm ET) The Braves have signed pitcher Peter Moylan to a minor-league deal, according to MLB Trade Rumors.

Moylan had Tommy John surgery last season, but is hoping to be able to pitch in games in April or May. The 36-year-old posted a 6.46 ERA over 15 1/3 innings in 2013. 


White Sox's Jesse Crain close to facing hitters
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(8:15 pm ET) 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."


 
 
 
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