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American League

Angels’ Shohei Ohtani Cleared To Hit

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Los Angeles Angels rookie phenom Shohei Ohtani has been cleared to hit and has will resume batting practice immediately, according to Angels general manager Billy Eppler.

Eppler said Ohtani had an MRI Thursday that noted improvement in his ulnar collateral ligament and the team expects to continue to see progress.

Ohtani will see doctors again in 3 weeks and, at that time, another update will be given.

“No doctor has told me that Shohei needs surgical intervention at this time.” Eppler said.

Ohtani has a Grade 2 sprain of the ulnar collateral ligament of his right elbow, which is a partial tear, and is hoping to avoid Tommy John surgery by leaning on injections of platelet-rich plasma and stem cells.

The Angels made no comments regarding Ohtani’s pitching status for 2018.

American League

Rangers Sign Rafael Montero

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The Texas Rangers have agreed to terms on a minor-league deal with right handed pitcher Rafael Montero, according to the Dallas Morning News’ Evan Grant.

Montero is still working back from Tommy John surgery, and was once a top prospect in the New York Mets organization , but struggled transitioning to the major league level, putting together a woeful 5.38 ERA over 192 1/3 innings pitched.

 

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American League

Astros Sign Robinson Chirinos to One-Year Deal

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The Houston Astros are signing free agent catcher Robinson Chirinos to a one-year deal with $5.75 million, according to The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal.

Chirinos had a career year in 2017 while playing for the Texas Rangers, but had a dramatic dip in production during the 2018 season and was no brought back by the team. Chirinos isn’t considered a defensive stud behind the plate either, and will join Max Stassi in the Astros catching rotation.

 

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American League

Angels Announce Coaching Staff

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The Los Angeles Angels have announced the coaching staff for brand new manager Brad Ausmus.

Pitching coach Doug White, hitting coach Jeremy Reed, and assistant hitting coach Shawn Wooten have already been announced as additions to Ausmus’ staff.

Long-time MLB infielder Mike Gallego will work with infielders and coach third base. Jose Molina, the former big league catcher, will work with catchers. Additionally, Jesus Feliciano will be slated to work with the outfielders and former slugger Paul Sorrento will join the hitting coaches team.

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