National League West capsules
Capsules of National League West teams, listed in order of finish last year:
Reliever John Axford, Blue Jays complete minor league deal
DUNDEIN, Fla. (AP) — Reliever John Axford and the Toronto Blue Jays have completed a minor league contract.
If added to the 40-man roster, the 35-year-old right-hander would get a one-year contract with a $1.65 million salary while in the major leagues. In the deal, announced Saturday by Toronto, he would have the chance to earn $1.7 million in performance bonuses based on games.
Axford was 4-1 with a 4.41 ERA in 45 appearances for Toronto last year, striking out 50 and walking 20 in 51 innings.
NL West teams at the start of spring training
A team-by-team look at the National League West entering spring training, including key players each club acquired and lost, and dates of the first workout for pitchers and catchers, and the full squad:
Los Angeles Dodgers
Manager: Dave Roberts (fourth season).
2018: 92-71, first place, lost to Boston in World Series.
Braves’ Swanson, Dodgers’ Stripling off NLDS rosters
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Injured shortstop Dansby Swanson didn't make the Atlanta Braves' roster for the National League Division Series. His replacement is Charlie Culberson, someone familiar to the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The Braves announced their roster Thursday, hours before the start of Game 1.
TORONTO (AP) — In line for his first win in more than two months, Zack Wheeler had to watch as the New York Mets bullpen turned a five-run lead into a two-run deficit.
Lourdes Gurriel Jr. hit a tiebreaking two-run home run in the eighth inning and the Toronto Blue Jays rallied to beat the struggling Mets 8-6 on Tuesday night.
"Wheeler threw a gem," said Mets reliever Anthony Swarzak, who allowed three runs. "We should have won this game."
Valbuena hits 2 HRs, Angels power past Blue Jays 8-5
ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Kole Calhoun, Luis Valbuena and the Los Angeles Angels seem to be hitting their way out of a long funk.
Valbuena homered twice, Calhoun connected for the second consecutive game and the Angels defeated the Toronto Blue Jays 8-5 on Thursday night.
The Angels have won two straight after dropping seven of eight. They handed the Blue Jays their ninth loss in 10 road games.
Oakland A’s release reliever John Axford
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — The Oakland Athletics have released reliever John Axford.
The A's announced the move on Tuesday, less than a week after he was designated for assignment by the struggling club.
The right-handed Axford pitched in 22 games for Oakland this season, going 0-1 with a 6.43 ERA.
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Kurt Suzuki's first home run against his former club made the Atlanta catcher smile. The second felt even better and extended the Braves recent run of good fortune.
Just another twist in Atlanta's up-and-down season.
Suzuki led off the 12th inning with his second home run of the game, lifting the Braves over the Oakland Athletics 4-3 on Sunday to complete a three-game sweep.
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Athletics reliever John Axford was placed on the 10-day disabled list Wednesday retroactive to Sunday with a strained right shoulder.
The right-hander experienced tightness after throwing a curveball warming up Tuesday night and didn't enter the game against the Angels.
He was undergoing an MRI exam Wednesday. Manager Bob Melvin said Axford had no issues leading up to the injury.
With so many options, A’s may not need traditional closer
MESA, Ariz. (AP) — If the Oakland Athletics can jump out to a lead this season, they should be in great shape.
As pitchers and catchers reported Wednesday, manager Bob Melvin reflected on his numerous options to close out games. So many options, in fact, that he might not even need a traditional closer.
"We may not have one particular closer," Melvin said. "We may do things a bit differently this year."
Calhoun homers to help Angels complete sweep of A’s
ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — The Los Angeles Angels saw one of their future stars make strides but may have lost their biggest star for the last days of the season, as Mike Trout exited the game after taking a fastball to the shoulder.
Kole Calhoun homered, Alex Meyer earned his second major league win and the Angels held off a late rally from the Oakland Athletics to sweep the three-game series with an 8-6 win Wednesday night.
OAKLAND -- The A's may not have been able to match their Nashville Triple-A farm team for pitching heroics Tuesday night, but they came awfully close.
Four Oakland pitchers, led by starter Zach Neal, combined to limit the Baltimore Orioles to just three hits as the A's eked out a 2-1 victory before 13,573 at the Coliseum. In short, it was one of the best pitching nights of the year as Neal and relievers Liam Hendriks, John Axford and Ryan Madson faced just four batters...
ANAHEIM -- First baseman Yonder Alonso, whose error in the eighth inning allowed the Angels to tie the game and force extra innings, delivered a run-scoring double in the 10th to trigger an 8-6 A's win, snapping a five-game Oakland losing streak.
Danny Valencia and pinch-hitter Billy Butler backed up two-out singles in the 10th before Alonso stepped in and lined a double into the gap, scoring Valencia. Butler came home on a Marcus Semien single as the A's closed out a 3-6...
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Coco Crisp singled home the winning run in the 13th inning for his eighth career game-ending RBI, and the Oakland Athletics beat the Tampa Bay Rays 1-0 on Friday night.
Ryon Healy doubled to start the rally against Dylan Floro (0-1), and both Healy and Crisp tossed their batting helmets in the air after the win that took 3 hours, 31 minutes.
John Axford (4-3) pitched the 12th and 13th innings for the win.