The latest from around MLB...
- Bad news for the St. Louis Cardinals: starter Chris Carpenter, who has yet to throw a pitch for the Cardinals this year, will undergo shoulder surgery, and his season is now over before it began. Carpenter, 37, had been feeling numbness and weakness in his shoulder for some time (Thoracic Outlet Syndrome), and couldn't get things back on track by way of rehab. In theory, he'll be back in time to open the 2013 season, the final year of his current two-year, $21 million contract. As for the Cardinals, this isn't exactly a season-killer. They've been getting by without Carpenter so far, and they won it all last year without Adam Wainwright. It's possible, though, that the Cardinals might start looking a bit more aggressively at trade options to bolster the rotation.
- Chipper Jones won't need your votes to get him on the NL All-Star team anymore. The former 34th man candidate is now officially on the squad after replacing Matt Kemp. He'll play the game at Kauffman Stadium, the only remaining active park in which he hasn't played. Neat.
- Speaking of Kemp, who's been out since May 30 with a strained hamstring, the Dodgers' star has started a rehab assignment, and plans to return to the Dodgers just after the All-Star break. In the interim, he plans to participate in the Home Run Derby.
- A couple of formerly dominant relievers might be looking for new jobs soon. The Red Sox dumped Bobby Jenks, and the A's have designated Brian Fuentes for assignment.
- Trevor Plouffe is killing the ball in Minnesota, but after a minor league career's worth of middling seasons as a utility player, is his explosion for real? FanGraphs takes a look and concludes: maybe.
- A random prospecting tidbit: BP's Kevin Goldstein hears from a scout that Cardinals' outfield prospect Oscar Taveras is the best offensive prospect in baseball, even over Royals' stud Wil Meyers.
- Andrew Cashner left his last start in scary fashion last night, throwing a ball to the backstop, pointing to his arm, and then leaving the game. Fortunately for him it is just a lat strain, and he'll probably miss three weeks or so.
Brett Taylor is the Lead Writer at Bleacher Nation, and a Contributor here at Bleed Cubbie Blue.