Baseball is a hectic sport. It's a daily game of attrition and attention, of suspense and anticipation. And through the last week, we've seen quite a bit of everything. Here's a recap of the week's most important news:
Ryan Zimmerman out 4-6 weeks (link)
The Nationals will be without their starting third baseman for the next several weeks:
The loss of Zimmerman, who is batting .364 with 2 HR and 6 RBI so far this season, will be a significant one for the Nats, who already lost starting catcher Wilson Ramos for 4-8 weeks due to hand surgery. The team has also lost Denard Span (concussion) and Doug Fister (strained lat) to injuries early in the season, causing them to play the first part of the season with limited depth.
Jedd Gyorko, Padres agree on extension (link)
The Padres came to terms on an extension with their second baseman:
Gyorko is the sixth Padre to sign a contract extension in recent years, joining Cameron Maybin, Cory Luebke, Carlos Quentin, Nick Hundley, Huston Street, Will Venable and Chris Denorfia. His deal is the fourth largest for a player with between one and two years of service time, trailing only Ryan Braun (Brewers), Andrelton Simmons (Braves) and Anthony Rizzo (Cubs).
Matt Moore to undergo Tommy John surgery (link)
The Rays lost another starting pitcher, this time for the rest of this season (and likely the early part of next year as well):
Moore, 24, attempted to pitch today in a throwing session, but felt that the discomfort in the elbow was too much to overcome. He was removed from his start on April 7 with elbow soreness, prompting concerns that he would join a long list of young pitchers to head under the knife early in the season.
Moore is the latest among many hurlers to head for Tommy John surgery this year, joining Cory Luebke (Padres), Kris Medlen, Brandon Beachy and Cory Gearrin (Braves), Jameson Taillon (Pirates), Bobby Parnell (Mets), Patrick Corbin and David Hernandez (Diamondbacks), Bruce Rondon (Tigers), Jarrod Parker (Athletics) and Luke Hochevar (Royals).
Sean Doolittle, Athletics agree on extension (link)
The Athletics made a move to give their bullpen some consistency and depth for the foreseeable future:
Doolittle's contract extension is worth five years and extends at least through 2018, though the deal reportedly includes options for 2019 and 2020 as well. If Beane is willing to make such a long-term investment, perhaps he has plans for Doolittle that extend beyond simply setup work. Or perhaps he sees it as simply insurance, guaranteeing at least some stability in a bullpen that has already seen closer Jim Johnson struggle out of the gate.
Doolittle has already saved a game this season, posting a 3.12 ERA along with a 0.81 WHIP. If Johnson continues to struggle, an interesting battle could ensue between Doolittle and fellow setup man Luke Gregerson for the closer role. With his recent lengthy contract extension, Doolittle just might be the favorite for the job.
Pirates Acquire Ike Davis from Mets (link)
The Mets finally pulled the trigger and have moved on from Ike Davis:
Davis, 27, has been the subject of constant trade rumors since December and has been linked to the Pirates for months. Pittsburgh will use him in a platoon at first base with Gaby Sanchez, meaning that the Bucs are no longer a possible destination for free agent first baseman Kendrys Morales.
Davis is hitting .208 with 1 HR and 5 RBI in 12 games this season. He is a lifetime .241 hitter with 68 HR and 224 RBI in parts of four major league seasons.
Starting pitcher market buyers and targets (link)
Justin Millar takes a look at who, what, and where starting pitchers might be given a second look in the trade market this season:
The free agent market for starters isn't nearly as robust as it is for relievers and position players, as without Ubaldo Jimenez and Ervin Santana, the selection is limited, and unless someone like Barry Zito or Jeff Niemann tickles your fancy, it would probably be best to focus on the trade market, which will surely heat up over the next couple months as more and more teams give up on 2014 playoff aspirations and realize that their best move would be to sell off expendable parts. Last year's deadline saw the likes of Jake Peavy, Matt Garza, Ricky Nolasco, Ian Kennedy, Bud Norris, and Scott Feldman get dealt, and this year's group has the potential to look much better than last year's.
Stay tuned for next week. Things can only get ore interesting from here.