Orioles’ Bourn breaks finger, will miss four weeks
Michael Bourn had a major setback in his attempt to make the Baltimore Orioles, breaking a finger while playing catch with a football during a team workout.
Orioles Manager Buck Showalter said Saturday that Bourn will miss about four weeks. The 34-year-old outfielder injured his right ring finger Friday after signing a minor league contract with the team Monday. If added to the 40-man roster, Bourn will make $2 million.
Bourn spent the final month of the 2016 season with Baltimore.
Also, the Orioles signed infielder Paul Janish to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training, the third straight year the Orioles brought in Janish during spring training. He appeared in 14 games for Baltimore in each of the past two seasons.
DODGERS: Even though it was just one inning and 12 pitches, it was a good enough start for Clayton Kershaw.
The Los Angeles ace helped begin the team’s exhibition season Saturday in a 5-3 win against the Dodgers’ spring training cotenants, the Chicago White Sox, in Glendale, Ariz.
The plan, as explained by Manager Dave Roberts before the game, was to have Kershaw work only one inning. He dispatched the White Sox in order, retiring Tim Anderson on a popup, striking out Melky Cabrera and getting Jose Abreu on a groundball. He was relieved by Alex Wood in the next inning.
“It was okay. I threw one change-up that was terrible. That’s what I got mad about,” Kershaw said after his outing before 8,474 fans. “I got behind every batter today. But the results were okay. I got three outs. I’ll take it for today and get ready for the next one.”
Kershaw said he will go two or three innings in his next start and likely go up one per outing from there. He is on track to pitch the April 3 opener at home against San Diego, tying Don Sutton’s franchise record of seven straight Opening Day starts.
CARDINALS: Cuban outfielder Adolis Garcia could make it to St. Louis at some point this season, according to General Manager John Mozeliak.
“In terms of skill-set, I just feel like I would describe him more as a five-tool player, so from a defensive standpoint, above average, from an offensive standpoint, I think there could be some power,” Mozeliak said.
Garcia, who turns 24 on Thursday, agreed Friday to a minor league contract with a $2.5 million signing bonus and was in camp ahead of the Cardinals’ exhibition opener against Miami.
Garcia earned MVP honors in Serie Nacional, Cuba’s highest league, in 2016 after hitting .319, with 14 homers and 71 RBI in 81 games with 15 outfield assists. He then had a brief stint with the Yomiuri Giants in Japan’s Central League.
“Obviously there were other offers and there were other teams, but I picked St. Louis because of the tradition and because it is such a wonderful organization and I knew that I was going to identify with the team and fit in,” Garcia said through an interpreter.
While Garcia worked out with the Cardinals, he won’t play in games until after he returns to his current residence in Haiti and obtains a U.S. work visa, a process expected to take a few weeks.
“He’s a specimen, I’ll tell you that,” Cardinals Manager Mike Matheny said.
Primarily a center fielder, Garcia can play all three outfield positions, a boon to the Cardinals as they look to add athleticism.
“It looks like he’s in plenty good shape, so we’ll just kind of put him out there and see how it comes together,” Matheny said.
Garcia is the younger brother of Adonis Garcia, who hit .273 with 14 homers for the Atlanta Braves last season.
MARLINS: If Giancarlo Stanton weren’t launching moonshots on a regular basis, Christian Yelich might be the talk of Miami’s outfield.
“I think [Yelich] is a star right now,” Manager Don Mattingly said.
Mattingly expects the lefthanded hitting Yelich, a former Gold Glove winner, current member of Team USA for the World Baseball Classic and a career .293 hitter, to take another step forward this season.
“I think power is still coming, and I think average, there’s more there, and I think there’s less strikeouts there,” Mattingly said.
Yelich, 25, didn’t reach doubledigit homers in any of his first three seasons before finding his power stroke in 2016, hitting 21.
Eleven of those homers came in August and September.
“Obviously it ticked up last year a little bit, but it’s not something that I’m forcing,” Yelich said. “I’m going to stay within my approach, and if they start to come, they start to come. Even last year, it wasn’t a conscious effort to hit more home runs. It kind of just happened. That’s how you want it to be.”
Michael Bourn, shown late last season, injured his finger playing catch, possibly hurting his chances of making the Orioles’ roster.