AL West Notes: Gallo, Halos Hurlers, M’s, Herrmann, McHugh

There’s little doubt that Rangers slugger Joey Gallo has drastically increased his career earnings outlook with a massive start to the current season. Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News takes a look at the state of affairs on the extension front for baseball’s reigning three-true-outcomes king. The organization is obviously impressed, with manager Chris Woodward tabbing Gallo the club’s “best player” and GM Jon Daniels saying that he’s “mentally in a great spot.” Gallo says he’s not thinking about contracts, but agent Scott Boras surely is. As Grant notes, Boras’s assessment of Gallo’s season to date — “we are seeing the evolution of a superstar player” — offers a hint as to the kind of contract it might take to lock him up.

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More from the American League West:

  • Angels righty J.C. Ramirez is set to launch a rehab assignment later this week, Maria Torres of the Los Angeles Times tweets. Ramirez underwent Tommy John surgery last April. With his 30-day rehab clock set to be triggered, Ramirez is now back on the map as a near-term roster piece for the Halos. The club owes him $1,901,000 this year, with two more arb campaigns remaining. Though he has had some struggles in his time in the majors, Ramirez has given the Halos 200 1/3 innings of 4.04 ERA ball and showed he could stick in the rotation in 2017.
  • As ever, there are other updates to the Angels rotation mix. Nick Tropeano will beat Ramirez back to the big leagues; as Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register tweets, Tropeano is coming up to pitch today’s ballgame. He was optioned after working back from a shoulder strain, and has been tagged in the run-happy PCL, but the innings are needed now. That’s due in no small part to the issues surrounding Matt Harvey, who just hit the injured list with a back strain after an awful stretch on the hill. Harvey didn’t have much of a timeline to offer reporters, as Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times reports (Twitter link). With more to sort out than an injury, there’s no reason to think Harvey will be rushed back.
  • For the Mariners, there are a few incremental health updates of note, as Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times reports (all links to Twitter). Rehabbing relievers Sam Tuivailala and Hunter Strickland are still a ways off. The former, who is working back from Achilles surgery, has come down with dead arm and may need to re-start his rehab rather than heading back to the majors. The latter is readying for his first mound work since leaving with a lat injury earlier this year. Starter Felix Hernandez, who’s on the IL with a shoulder strain, is also nearing mound work. The club is still taking it slow with corner infielder Ryon Healy, who has yet to resume baseball activity after recently hitting the shelf due to a balky lower back. That’s a less promising outlook than had been indicated when he was first sidelined, but the club no doubt hopes to avoid a lingering problem.
  • Athletics backstop Chris Herrmann is nearing a rehab assignment, per Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle (Twitter link). Herrmann inked a one-year, $1MM deal over the offseason but hasn’t yet debuted with his new organization owing to knee surgery. It remains to be seen how the Oakland club will manage its roster once Herrmann is ready; Josh Phegley has hit well all year and Nick Hundley has turned it on after a dreadful start. It’s possible the A’s could ultimately carry all three, at least for a stretch, as Herrmann does have experience playing in other parts of the field.
  • It still doesn’t seem the Astros have cause for alarm regarding righty Collin McHugh, but he’s not going to be ready to return within the minimum ten-day window. Manager A.J. Hinch tells reporters, including Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle (Twitter link), that McHugh is in need of “a little more down time” to let his elbow stop barking. “He’s played catch a couple days and has not seen any progress,” says Hinch. “He’s not any closer than he was a few days ago.” McHugh has been a bit homer-prone, which explains his rough 6.04 ERA on the year, but otherwise has impressive peripherals. That he has been moved out of the rotation and into a relief role is testament to the depth of the talent on hand in Houston.

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