Fortunately, they're still within striking distance of a playoff spot.
As recently as 2 weeks ago, Epstein evaluated prospects at Class-A Myrtle Beach, and his top evaluators also looked at other players in the system to determine who was worth keeping or trading. "If we don't get hot, obviously we'll have a little bit longer-term perspective".
If you believe every tweet you read, then you probably believe Athletics pitcher Sonny Gray was scratched from his start Friday in Oakland, even though he actually pitched. Obviously, the Cubs are optimistic he'll be able to lower that ERA in the National League and in a more pitcher-friendly ballpark. In fact, the O's bullpen only allowed four base runners in the final six innings.
"I'm hoping we can put it together, have more consistent pitching, more consistent contributions from some of our veteran players and find the pieces we need to contend", said Dan Duquette, the team's executive vice president of baseball operations.
Also, starter John Lackey, 38, has been coping with plantar fasciitis in his right foot for at least his past couple starts.
"I'm kind of stunned", said Cease, who had no inkling that he was about to be traded. "It really tests the willpower a little bit".
- Showalter said that he hopes that infielder Ryan Flaherty (shoulder) will be ready for a rehab assignment in the next five to seven days. And it's not even clear what the Cubs could offer to get such a deal done, after shipping their top two prospects to the White Sox for Quintana.
Tigers catcher Alex Avila is reportedly on the Cubs' radar. "We saw it in April".
"Everybody knows there's a lot more we can bring out in the second half", Chicago's Ben Zobrist told MLB.com. The right-hander put up a 2.79 ERA with a 74/26 K/BB ratio in 51 2/3 innings at Single-A South Bend this season.
Britton has appeared in only 11 games after going 47 for 47 in save opportunities last year. His injured forearm now appears to be fully functional, and his presence could be pivotal if Baltimore is to be relevant in August and September.
"Having the bullpen depth makes our whole pitching staff better", Duquette said.
RANGERS 5, ROYALS 3: Adrian Beltre hit a three-run homer, pinch-hitter Mike Napoli had a go-ahead two-run shot and the Rangers rallied to beat the Royals at Kansas City.
NOTES: To make room for first baseman Chris Davis, who was activated from the 10-day disabled list, the Orioles outrighted outfielder Craig Gentry to Triple-A Norfolk.
"In spite of some disappointments we've had some real positives", Duquette said.
The Orioles ultimately will be judged on their second half, which begins Friday night with a 10-game homestand.
In a stunning development, the Chicago Cubs mortgaged a large chunk of their future Thursday by acquiring prized left-hander Jose Quintana for four prospects.
"We love what we're getting", Epstein said.
- Federer: "Me siento privilegiado por estar en otra final"
- Huracán Fernanda alcanza categoría 3 en el pacífico mexicano
- Formula One Cockpit Protecting 'Shield' Breaks Cover at Silverstone
- Destituyen a delegado de la SCT por socavón del Paso Express
- Garbine Muguruza Defeats Venus Williams in Wimbledon Final
- Un autobús se incendia y provoca la muerte de 14 personas — Ecuador
- Investigan muerte de director de prepa de la UANL
- México regresará a ser un gran productor de petróleo: Peña
- Cesan a delegado de la SCT tras muertes en Paso Exprés
- Detienen a asesino de hermana de comentarista de ESPN