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MLB News And Notes for April 1

As the calendar turns to April, we are less than a week away from Opening Day on April 7. With so much excitement building, general managers are still putting the final touches on their rosters while players finish their preparations for the regular season.

With Opening Day just days away, let’s take a look at some of the biggest stories around MLB.

Dodgers And White Sox Make Win-Win Trade

It is not too often that teams make a truly win-win trade, but on Friday, the Los Angeles Dodgers and Chicago White Sox may have done exactly that.’s Mark Feinsand broke the news that the Dodgers were sending outfielder AJ Pollock to the White Sox for closer Craig Kimbrel.

For the White Sox, they had a glaring hole in right field that Pollock will be able to fill. While they had some options there, none of them were ideal fits.

For instance, Andrew Vaughn and Gavin Sheets are solid offensively but a liability defensively. The White Sox hope Pollock can be a good all-around player.

Last season, the 34-year-old Pollock hit .297/.355/.536 with 21 home runs, 69 runs batted in, 53 runs scored, and nine stolen bases in 384 at bats.

The White Sox were also willing to give up on Kimbrel, given that they have Liam Hendricks to close. Kimbrel was acquired at the trade deadline last year from the Cubs, but he struggled with the Southsiders. In 24 games, he had a 5.09 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, and struck out 36 in 23 innings.

The Dodgers will look for Kimbrel to fill their closer position and will hope he is more like the pitcher that threw for the Cubs at the beginning of last season. In 39 games with the Cubs, he had 23 saves to go along with a 0.49 ERA, 0.71 WHIP, and struck out 64 in 36.2 innings.

The Dodgers are currently the favorites to win the World Series this year at +470. The White Sox are tied for the third-best odds at +1000 to win it all.

Other White Sox News

The Pollock acquisition was not the only news that broke out of the White Sox camp on Friday. On a positive note, the White Sox were able to avoid arbitration with star pitcher Lucas Giolito by agreeing to a one-year, $7.45 million contract.

Last year, Giolito went 11-9 for the White Sox with a 3.53 ERA, 1.10 WHIP, and had 201 strikeouts in 178.2 innings pitched.

On a negative note, they actually lost two significant relievers on Friday. Not only did they trade away Craig Kimbrel, but they lost Garret Crochet for the season as general manager Rick Hahn announced that it appears MRI imaging has revealed the need for Tommy John surgery.

Crochet is going to go for a second opinion, but it could be a big blow if they lose the lefty. Last season, Crochet went 3-5 in 54 games with a 2.82 ERA, 1.27 WHIP, and struck out 65 in 54.1 innings.

At just 22-years-old, Crochet still has a long career ahead of him, but it appears that it might not be until 2023 that he gets back on the mound for Chicago.

Major Concern Over deGrom’s Health

The White Sox aren’t the only team dealing with an injured pitcher. The New York Mets scratched Jacob deGrom from his scheduled spring training start and will instead go for an MRI.

While no diagnosis has been made yet, this obviously puts deGrom in serious jeopardy of being ready for the start of the season.

Unfortunately, this is not new for deGrom, as he dealt with arm injuries last season, too. deGrom was unreal last year, going 7-2 with a 1.08 ERA, 0.554 WHIP, and 146 strikeouts in 92 innings. However, as arm injuries popped up, he was limited to just 15 starts.

The Mets were feared as one of the teams to beat in the National League with a one-two punch of deGrom and Max Scherzer. In fact, they are tied for the third-best odds of winning the National League at +600.

If deGrom has to miss any significant time with an injury, though, that will be a huge blow to their chances.

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