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The Opener: German, Guerrero, MLBTR Chat

The Opener: German, Guerrero, MLBTR Chat

As the 2023 regular season continues, here are three things we’ll be keeping an eye on around the baseball world throughout the day today:

1. German facing discipline:

Yankees right-hander Domingo German was ejected from last night’s game following a foreign substance inspection. Home plate umpire James Hoye told reporters following the game that German’s hand was “the stickiest (he) had ever felt,” noting it “was definitely not rosin.” That leaves German almost certainly facing a 10-game suspension during which the Yankees would not be allowed to replace the 30-year-old righty on the roster. It’s the second time this season that German has been questioned for foreign substance use. He was twice warned — also by Hoye — to wash his hands in a game against the Twins last month, during which German flirted with a no-hitter. Minnesota manager Rocco Baldelli was ejected after the umpiring crew allowed German to continue pitching and criticized the crew’s decision after the game.

German has had a solid 3.75 ERA in nine starts for the Yankees this season, but now a club that’s already missing Luis Severino, Carlos Rodon, and Frankie Montas figures to go without yet another starter for ten days. If German does end up suspended, right-hander Randy Vasquez is on the 40-man roster as a potential depth option for the rotation, though he’s posted a concerning 5.50 ERA in eight starts at the Triple-A level. Long reliever Ryan Weber could also get a start. Severino has already made a pair of minor league rehab starts, he’s another option if the Yankees feel he’s had sufficient time to build back up.

2. Guerrero to undergo MRI:

Blue Jays slugger Vladimir Guerrero Jr. left last night’s game against the Yankees dealing with right knee discomfort, as manager John Schneider tells reporters (including Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet). Guerrero will undergo an MRI, with the Blue Jays likely to make decisions regarding the path forward for Guerrero afterwards. Toronto’s superstar first baseman is off to a phenomenal start in 2023, with a .312/.385/.516 slash line that’s good for a 150 wRC+.

Losing Guerrero for any amount of time would be a sizable blow for a Blue Jays club that currently slots in at third place with a 24-18 record in a very competitive AL East. Should Guerrero miss time, Santiago Espinal and Cavan Biggio could see more playing time off the bench, though the club does have first base prospect Spencer Horwitz, who is…

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