MLB Player News
Devon Travis (shoulder) remains on track to miss the start of the 2016 season, ESPN's Buster Olney reports.
With plenty of offense in tow, the Jays can afford to take their time with the young second baseman. Upon having surgery on his left shoulder in November, the expectation was that Travis would need 16-20 weeks to recover. Ryan Goins remains the favorite to pick up the extra playing time at second base while Travis is on the shelf.
Maicer Izturis signed a minor league contract with the Toronto Blue Jays on Friday that included an invitation to spring training, Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsbet reports.
Izturis had his club option for 2016 declined, but the 35-year-old is back with Toronto anyway. He hasn't appeared in the majors since 2014 due to injuries, where he batted .286 in 38 plate appearances. He'll likely serve as organizational depth with the infield pretty well solidified for the AL East champions.
Yoan Moncada received an award as the Boston Red Sox minor-league player of the year from the Boston chapter of the Baseball Writers of America, the Providence Journal reports.
Moncada, 20, is considered Boston's top prospect and should advance through at least two levels in 2016. He made adjustments during the second half of the season at Low-A Greenville and appears ready to tackle High-Salem and later Double-A Portland in 2016.
Danny Worth signed a minor league contract with the Houston Astros that includes an invite to spring training, Jose de Jesus Ortiz of the Houston Chronicle reports.
Worth spent the 2015 season in the Diamondbacks' organization, sporting an impressive .314/.394/.469 slash line in 106 games with the Triple-A club. The 30-year-old has some major league experience, but he figures to serve as organizational infield depth with Houston.
Jurickson Profar (shoulder) will likely start the season playing shortstop at Triple-A Round Rock, but the Texas Rangers might eventually consider him as an option for the big-league outfield, the Dallas Morning News reports.
It doesn't sound like the Rangers have any immediate plans to move Profar to the outfield, but he could get some reps this spring in an effort to improve organizational depth. If the Texas infield remains healthy while the outfield suffers some injuries, Profar might then get a chance to try out a new position. He slashed .267/.352/.453 in the Arizona Fall League, but he was strictly used as a designated hitter, and the Rangers still have Elvis Andrus and Rougned Odor blocking him from playing time in the middle infield. The most recent report on Profar's shoulder said that he's been throwing from 135 feet.
Yoan Moncada said he is fully recovered from the hand injury that prevented him from playing winter ball, the Boston Globe reports. "I feel great now," the 20-year-old said via a translator. "I'm looking forward to going into the season 100 percent healthy. I've started doing swings already."
Moncada, who struggled initially in his acclimation to baseball in the United States, finished the 2015 season with .817 OPS for Low-A Greenville and is considered Boston's top prospect. Depending on his development this year, Moncada could reach the majors by the end of the 2017 season.
Jurickson Profar (shoulder) is throwing from 135 feet, Stefan Stevenson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports.
The 22-year-old is reportedly responding well as he ramps up his throwing. While it's possible he may still face restrictions at the very start of camp, Profar said he expects to be a full-go in March. Profar returned to play 12 games between Low-A and Double-A last season, and followed that up with a strong offensive showing in the Arizona Fall League, but his arm strength remains a question mark as he played exclusively at DH.
Ryan Flaherty and the Baltimore Orioles agreed to terms on a one-year, $1.5 million deal Friday, avoiding arbitration, the Baltimore Sun reports.
The veteran utility infielder hit just .202 with a .637 OPS last season, but he'll return as a reliable, versatile defensive option. Flaherty made only $1.075 million last season, so the $1.5 million figure represents a small raise.
Logan Forsythe avoided arbitration with the Tampa Bay Rays on Friday by agreeing to a two-year, $10.25 million deal with an option, Jon Heyman of MLB Network reports.
Forsythe enjoyed a breakout season in 2015 by slashing .281/.359/.444 while establishing himself as the team's everyday second baseman, but ended the year on a bad note with a foot contusion. He figures to be 100 percent when he reports to spring training, so it shouldn't be too much of a concern. This deal will buy out the 29-year-old's final years of arbitration, along with a possible year of free agency if the Rays deem his option worth the cost.
Jurickson Profar and the Texas Rangers have agreed to a one-year, $605,000 contract, avoiding arbitration, Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reports.
After missing the past two seasons due to shoulder injuries, Profar served as a designated hitter in the Arizona Fall League, posting a .267/.352/.453 slash line in 75 at-bats, with a 10:11 K:BB ratio. He won't turn 23 until February and thus still has time to rebuild his status as a top prospect, but the Rangers appear to be set with Elvis Andrus and Rougned Odor manning the middle infield. Profar's future, while still somewhat promising, also remains highly uncertain.