MLB injuries, news and rumors roundup for April 2

By Matt Snyder | Baseball Writer

Cole Hamels is making slow but sure progress toward returning.
Cole Hamels is making slow but sure progress toward returning. (USATSI)

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Wow, what a day for on-field MLB action. Definitely click through on the above link to the scoreboard if you missed out, because the drama has already been sky-high in just a few days. As for the off-field/injury stuff, we've got you covered.

SIGNING/AGREEMENT

Rays: They did what they do and agreed to a six-year, $25.5 million extension with young pitcher Chris Archer.

INJURY UPDATES

Astros: Reliever Jesse Crain (offseason biceps surgery) is targeting an early May return to the hill. He'll throw off a mound as soon as Tuesday (Ultimate Astros).

Mets: Outfielder Chris Young has managed to play just one inning and might be DL-bound with a quad injury (ESPN New York).

Nationals: Doug Fister (lat muscle) might resume throwing again Thursday (washingtonpost.com). Also, after taking a shot to the head sliding into second base on Opening Day, Bryce Harper was required to pass concussion tests before Wednesday's game. And he did (nytimes.com).

Orioles: Manager Buck Showalter has been impressed with Johan Santana's progress so far (MLB.com).

Phillies: Cole Hamels will officially begin his rehab assignment Sunday for Class-A Clearwater (philly.com). Remember, rehab stints can't last longer than 30 days, so this means he's within a month of a return, barring a setback, of course.

Pirates: Top pitching prospect Jameson Taillon has an elbow issue and the club is "still working through the process" of an evaulation by Dr. Neal ElAttrache (triblive.com).

Rangers: Ace Yu Darvish will return to the hill Sunday. Also, Derek Holland believes he can be back June 1 (dallasnews.com).

Rockies: Star outfielder Carlos Gonzalez had to exit the game Wednesday due to dizziness, but it's been termed a precautionary measure (denverpost.com).

MISCELLANY

Blue Jays: No, they aren't looking for external help at shortstop with Jose Reyes hurt (Brendan Kennedy).

Giants: Pablo Sandoval is set to be a free agent after this season, but he's given the OK to negotiate a deal in-season -- a move many players don't make (csnbayarea.com).

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