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MLB News and Notes for Tuesday, July 5th, 2022

As we approach the midway point of the MLB season, teams around the league are hard at work determining whether they are contenders or pretenders. With less than a month until the trade deadline, rumors will start swirling in the coming weeks.

While trade activity has yet to get in full swing, there is still plenty of news around the league. Here are some of the biggest stories from the week.

Giants Lose Starter For The Season

At 40-38, the San Francisco Giants sit in third in the NL West, 9.5 games behind the first-place Los Angeles Dodgers. Unfortunately, as they look to compete in the division, they received some bad news this week.
Starting pitcher Anthony DeSclafani will be out for the season due to needing surgery to repair a tendon in his right ankle. Maria I. Guardado of reported the surgery first and indicated he would likely be out for at least four months.

Last season, in 31 games, DeSclafani went 13-7 with a 3.17 ERA, 1.091 WHIP, and had 152 strikeouts in 167.2 innings of work. Due to injuries, this season has been much more frustrating for the 32-year-old righty. DeSclafani has pitched in just five games, going 0-2 with a 9.95 ERA, 2.05 WHIP, and 17 strikeouts in 19 innings.

After his great season last year, DeSclafani signed a three-year deal worth $36 million with the Giants. This is obviously not the start that he nor the Giants were hoping for.

The Giants have struggled on the mound this season, ranking 21st in the majors with a 4.06 ERA. They are currently +1800 to win the NL West and +3000 to win the World Series.

Dodgers Sign Austin Barnes To Extension

Over the weekend, Robert Murray of FanSided reported that the Los Angeles Dodgers and catcher Austin Barnes have agreed to a contract extension. The extension is for two years and will pay the 32-year-old Barnes $7 million.

Barnes has played in 31 games this season, hitting .307/.357/.664 in 84 at-bats with four home runs, 12 runs batted in, and 14 runs scored. The Dodgers rely on young phenom Will Smith for most of their starts behind the plate, but this ensures that the Dodgers have a more than capable backup available in the immediate future.

Los Angeles has the best record in the National League at 50-29, leading the NL West by 4.5 games over the San Diego Padres. They are the favorites to win the division at -390 and have the second-best odds of winning the World Series at +450.

Mets Starting To Get Healthy As Scherzer Set To Return

At 50-30, the New York Mets have the second-best record in the National League, mere percentage points behind the Los Angeles Dodgers. In the NL East, they sit with a 3.5-game lead over the defending champion Atlanta Braves.

The most impressive thing for the Mets is that they have built this success despite not having their two best pitchers for most of the season. That will at least partially change this week.

Max Scherzer will return on Tuesday as the Mets take on the Cincinnati Reds. Scherzer has been out since the middle of May when he went on the injured list with an oblique strain. Before his injury, he had gone 5-1 in eight games with a 2.54 ERA, 0.95 WHIP, and 59 strikeouts in 49.2 innings of work.

The other half of the equation, Jacob deGrom, also appears to be getting close. deGrom has not pitched in the majors this year after suffering a stress reaction in his pitching shoulder. On Sunday, deGrom pitched 1.2 innings, striking out five of six batters in just 24 pitches. He was capped at just 25 pitches for his first rehab start, so he did not leave the game early due to any injuries.

If Scherzer and deGrom can eventually return in full force, the Mets will be a team to be reckoned with. They are already the favorites to win the NL East at -160 and have the fourth-best odds of winning the World Series at +700.

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