Top prospect Alex Verdugo could help Dodgers swing a big trade

first_imgSeager underwent Tommy John surgery on his right elbow in May and arthroscopic surgery on his left hip in August. His rehab has featured no setbacks and the Dodgers are still optimistic that he will be ready to play at the start of the 2019 season.Meanwhile, Kenley Jansen has resumed training after undergoing heart surgery two weeks ago to address last year’s recurrence of atrial fibrillation. It was Jansen’s second such procedure in the past six years.“I saw him the other day. He looked great,” Friedman said. “He’s in a great frame of mind.”Friedman said Jansen is expected to report to spring training in two months with no restrictions on his activity. Dodgers hit seven home runs, sweep Colorado Rockies LAS VEGAS — Alex Verdugo is the Dodgers’ top-rated prospect, a big-league ready player with an attractive skill set.The same description applied to Corey Seager, Cody Bellinger and Walker Buehler over the past three years and each was brought to the majors and given a chance to establish themselves as big-leaguers. The results were two unanimous Rookie of the Year awards and a third-place finish.Verdugo, however, has spent most of the past two years at Triple-A, making only sporadic visits to the Dodgers’ lineup.Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman says all the right, nice things about the 22-year-old outfielder. He has excellent “bat-to-ball skills, a great feel for the game, good instincts and ability.” But he is just one of eight outfielders who started at least five games for the Dodgers last season, all of whom are still under contract (or club control) for 2019. Fire danger is on Dave Roberts’ mind as Dodgers head to San Francisco How Dodgers pitcher Ross Stripling topped the baseball podcast empire The Indians have made it clear upgrading their outfield is a winter priority and they are willing to deal either Kluber or Bauer to do it. Payroll relief would be a side benefit.Kluber would slide into the front of the Dodgers’ rotation, giving them a formidable trio featuring a three-time Cy Young Award winner (Clayton Kershaw), a two-time winner (Kluber) and a possible future candidate (Buehler).Kluber has finished in the top three in voting for the American League Cy Young award in four of the past five seasons, including this year when he finished third after going 20-7 with a 2.89 ERA, a 0.99 WHIP and 222 strikeouts in an AL-leading 215 innings.Although he will turn 33 in April, Kluber is a relative bargain at $17 million in 2019 with club options that would pay him $17.5 million in 2020 and $18 million in 2021 – or be bought out for $1 million either season if things don’t go well.Bauer, meanwhile, is a more risky acquisition. The 27-year-old right-hander from UCLA was outstanding in 2018. He made his first All-Star team and finished sixth in the AL Cy Young voting with a 12-6 record and career-bests in ERA (2.21), WHIP (1.09) and strikeouts (221 in 175-1/3 innings). But Bauer’s track record is not as established as Kluber’s and he has a well-earned reputation as an iconoclast.“He’s done everything he possibly can to show he’s more than ready for a lot of playing time at the major-league level,” Friedman said of Verdugo.HEALTH UPDATESShortstop Corey Seager has “switched gears from rehabbing to training,” Friedman said, and he has begun running and throwing programs as well as doing some hitting.Related Articlescenter_img Dodgers’ Max Muncy trying to work his way out of slow start Cody Bellinger homer gives Dodgers their first walkoff win of season That surplus – and the nine-deep starting pitching depth chart – are not likely to survive until spring training.Sign up for Home Turf and get exclusive stories every SoCal sports fan must read, sent daily. Subscribe here.“I’d be surprised if that were the case,” Friedman said, asserting that “they’re all talented enough where things will line up and make sense (in a trade), where it works out well for our team and an acquiring team.“If the return didn’t work for us, we wouldn’t (make a trade just to thin the group). But I can’t see that happening.”As the Winter Meetings opened Monday, Verdugo appears to be the most obvious piece around which the Dodgers are building a trade package that could land them either Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto or one of the starting pitchers the Cleveland Indians appear intent on moving.A deal with the Indians appears more likely at this point. The Dodgers have been engaged in talks with the Indians regarding catcher Yan Gomes (who has been traded to the Washington Nationals) and now starting pitchers Corey Kluber and Trevor Bauer. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more

Paul ‘Triple H’ Levesque on ‘holding my breath’ through death-defying spot at the end of NXT TakeOver

first_img“You know they are coming,” Levesque said. “You know what’s happening and especially in big ones like that because that is stuff I absolutely know and I absolutely sign off on it. There’s certain things where I believe they can do safely and I believe the risk-to-reward ratio is reasonable.”But there are also things that were brought up tonight where I was like, ‘Absolutely not’ (laughs). ‘No, you’re not doing that guys. As much as I love you guys and want you to tear it up like you were going to tear it up with all the other stuff, you don’t need that.'”But that’s when you hold your breath and you just wait for the landing and you’re just waiting for the referee to tell you that everybody is OK.” THIS IS WAR. #NXTTakeOver #WarGames @AdamColePro @NXTCiampa— WWE NXT (@WWENXT) November 24, 2019Join DAZN and watch more than 100 fight nights a yearThe ending was one of the most dangerous spots in WWE in some time. Two wrestlers were at the top of a cage about 15 to 20 feet in the air, and all you can hope for as a spectator is that, whatever happens, both men will be OK. Ciampa and Cole ended up being OK.The moment wasn’t lost on Paul “Triple H” Levesque, the founder and senior producer of NXT and WWE’s executive vice president of talent, live events and creative, as he watched his top acts putting it all on the line.”Those are the moments where I’m just holding my breath,” Levesque told Sporting News during a media session following the event. “The truth is in this business, I’ve seen more people get injured, including myself, on dumb little things. The stuff, the big, giant spectacle spots that you really put so much care and thought into — yes, they are extremely dangerous, yes, they are extremely impactful.”It’s funny, (but) more often than not, it’s the guy running across the ring and just turns his ankle and he’s out six months.” Even though Ciampa and Cole safely executed the maneuver, some will question why such a move would be needed in an already physical affair among eight participants inside two steel cages with tables at their disposal.  Levesque admits he approved the ending, but that doesn’t mean he was going to allow his talent to do everything under the sun.  ROSEMONT, Ill. — The main event of Saturday’s WWE NXT TakeOver: WarGames show at Allstate Arena featured Team Ciampa (Tommaso Ciampa, Keith Lee, Donovan Dijakovic and Kevin Owens) defeating The Undisputed Era (NXT heavyweight champion Adam Cole, North American champ Roderick Strong and tag team champions Bobby Fish and Kyle O’Reilly). The end of the match had Ciampa and Cole at the top corner of the first cage fighting for position. Ciampa, the former NXT champion, gained the advantage and executed the Air Raid with him and Cole crashing through a table. Ciampa then obtained the pinfall victory.last_img read more

Panthers still building: Griffin

first_imgIn a fairly-even contest between the two sides, a late four-pointer to Roosters fullback Michael Gordon secured the win for the visitors, but Griffin said his men were out of luck after a number of 50-50 calls failed to go their way and a strong defensive effort was trumped by the Tri-colours.  “Obviously we got beat with points on the scoreboard but I thought it was a really good effort and something we can build on,” Griffin said post-game.”I thought we were very unlucky but that’s what happens at this level.”They [Roosters] had 58 per cent time in possession so I feel sorry for the players they didn’t get to feel that tonight but we’ll build on that and feel it another time.”To win games in this competition you need to be a good defensive team and we almost pulled off a win tonight without the ball. We got a couple of things technically wrong on that right side but apart from that, I thought we were brilliant in defence.”I thought tonight was better than last week and last week was better the first week.”Despite having 20-less carries compared to their opposition, the Panthers matched the Roosters in the forwards with Trent Merrin, James Tamou and Reagan Cambell-Gillard all contributing with high numbers up front.”I thought our forward pack was outstanding and both really went at each other all night,” Griffin said. “He hasn’t played a lot of footy, Trent [Merrin]. He didn’t get much work in the first game [against the Dragons] as we were standing behind the goal posts most of that day and then last week he got about 50 minutes. “He played 73 minutes in the middle [tonight]… that will do him the world of good, it was a blowout for him.Griffin also confirmed James Fisher-Harris will spend at least the next fortnight on the sidelines after fracturing his cheekbone early in the first half of the two-point loss. “He’s got a fractured cheekbone unfortunately… he had a head clash early on in the game and as soon as he tried to blow his nose it just popped out.”He’ll be a few weeks out.”We’ve obviously got some areas to work on but I thought even though we had to overcome James’ injury, we did a good job to hold the game together.”As a club we were very courageous and a few things went against us tonight as everyone seen.”last_img read more