Padres scratch Joe Musgrove from start with lingering right shoulder stiffness #Padres #scratch #Joe #Musgrove #start #lingering #shoulder #stiffness

DENVER (AP) — The San Diego Padres scratched Joe Musgrove from his scheduled start Wednesday with lingering shoulder stiffness, one day after recommitting to a playoff push with several trade deadine acquisitions.

Musgrove (10-3, 3.05 ERA) was an All-Star in 2022 and has been nearly as good this year despite discomfort in his right shoulder. Nick Martinez started in his place Wednesday.

“He’s been pitching through it,” Padres manager Bob Melvin said. “But at this point in time, we just don’t want it to get any worse. So probably end up skipping one start.”

San Diego, which entered the year with World Series aspirations and a payroll nearing $250 million, is currently outside the NL playoff picture. The team traded for five players Tuesday in a show that it is not conceding.

Its acquisitions included 43-year-old Rich Hill, a left-handed starter who told on Tuesday that he plans to pitch again next season, which would be his 20th in the majors. He experienced a career revival at the age of 35 and has continued that success. He was 7-10 with a 4.76 ERA in 22 starts for the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2023 and is now pitching for his 13th franchise.

Along with Hill, the Padres acquired designated hitter Ji Man Choi from Pittsburgh, traded for first baseman/outfielder Garrett Cooper and right-hander Sean Reynolds from Miami and reliever Scott Barlow from Kansas City.

Hill is on a one-year contract and his immediate plans are to anchor the back end of the San Diego’s rotation, which has been impacted by injuries. Michael Wacha (right shoulder inflammation) won’t return until mid-August at the earliest, and now Musgrove’s status is uncertain.

Hill is meeting the team in San Diego and could start Sunday against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Choi and Cooper are in Denver but were not in Wednesday’s starting lineup against the Colorado Rockies. Melvin said there is a potential to use them off the bench.

Barlow is in the bullpen and ready to go after an eventful 24 hours.

“Last night, got packed actually pretty quickly, everything was kind of already folded,” he said. “Got to bed pretty early, woke up around 3 (a.m.), got on the flight at six, landed at seven, some traffic in Denver, so got in the Ritz at eight, took a little snooze, and here we are.”

Barlow was 2-4 with a 5.35 ERA and 13 saves in 38 appearances with the Royals. He is expected to serve as one of the set-up men for All-Star closer Josh Hader.

“Barlow is going to be a great addition to our bullpen,” Melvin said. “Right behind Hader and (Robert) Suárez. He’s been a closer at times, plus stuff, really good slider and bolsters our bullpen.”



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