MLB Player News
Chase d'Arnaud signed a minor league contract with the Atlanta Braves that includes an invitation to attend spring training.
d'Arnaud spent last year in the Phillies organization, playing with Triple-A Lehigh Valley prior to a September call-up. He was a decent hitter, batting .268 with five home runs and 35 RBI, but was outrighted off the Phillies' 40-man roster after the season was over. The 28-year-old will look to find a spot as a utility infielder during spring training.
Dustin Pedroia will get more days off during the 2016 season, the Boston Globe reports.
The decision to give 32-year-old Pedroia more time off makes perfect sense. Several injuries over the last four years have contributed to a reduced batting average and OPS, and the team would like to avoid protracted down time. Brock Holt will be the fill-in when Pedroia is off.
Nolan Fontana was added to the Houston Astros ' 40-man roster Friday, the Houston Chronicle reports.
While Fontana slugged just .357 in the Pacific Coast League last season, he managed a .369 OBP on the strength of a 16.2 percent walk rate, and there is some hope that a bit of power will show up eventually. This move was made primarily for Rule 5 protection, but Fontana could be a utility option at some point in 2016.
Josh Rutledge was designated for assignment Friday, Pete Abraham of the Boston Globe reports.
Rutledge slashed a respectable .284/.333/.338 in 39 games with the big league club in 2015, but was a casualty of the team needing to clear space on the 40-man roster. He should be able to see some time as a utility infield option in 2016, but could once again spend the majority of the season in the minors.
Joe Wendle was added to the 40-man roster Friday.
Wendle put up an impressive campaign with Triple-A Nashville in 2015, slashing .289/.323/.442 with 10 homers. The procedural move was likely done to protect him from the upcoming Rule 5 draft, but it's possible Wendle sees some time in the majors next season.
Luis Sardinas was traded to the Seattle Mariners on Friday for outfielder Ramon Flores, Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports reports.
With the Brewers acquiring Jonathan Villar from the Astros on Thursday, Sardinas suddenly became expendable, opening the door for a trade that better suits both clubs' 40-man rosters. The 22-year-old infielder played in 36 games with Milwaukee this season, recording a pitiful .196/.240/.216 line in 97 at-bats. Still, what Sardinas lacks in hitting he more than makes up for in defensive prowess and he will more than likely push incumbent Ketel Marte for occasional starts at shortstop next season. He shouldn't be considered a fantasy option in anything other than deep AL-only leagues to start next season, but he could factor into the Mariners infield if any injury sidelines Marte or Robinson Cano for any extended time.
Christopher Bostick was added to the Washington Nationals ' 40-man roster Thursday, Mark Zuckerman of CSN Washington reports.
His on-base percentage fell by nearly 60 points after he moved to Double-A Harrisburg in mid-June, but Bostick doubled his home run total from High-A Potomac (4) in just 13 more games, and added 16 more stolen bases. Bostick has played mostly at second base in his five minor league seasons, making just 24 total appearances at short, so it seems unlikely he will be in the running for the starting shortstop job in the spring. This move was made primarily for Rule 5 protection, but Bostick could be a utility option later in the year.
Devon Travis underwent surgery on his left shoulder and will likely miss the beginning of the regular season, Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet reports.
Shi Davidi of Sportsnet reported that Travis had a pre-existing acromion bone non-union in his left shoulder which was discovered during the season. After exhausting every other option, the Toronto Blue Jays opted to have the 24-year-old undergo surgery, which Nicholson-Smith reported included screws inserted into the second-baseman's shoulder in order to stabilize the bone. He's expected to miss all of spring training, and it's very possible Travis could also miss the first month of the regular season. Ryan Goins will likely take over at second base during his absence, but it remains to be seen if the Blue Jays will add more depth to their infield during the offseason in order to compensate for the loss.
Javier Betancourt was traded to the Milwaukee Brewers on Wednesday along with a player to be named later in exchange for Francisco Rodriguez, FOX Sports' Jon Morosi reports.
The 20-year-old Venezuelan does not have exciting offensive tools, but he could offer just enough value with the bat and glove to be a second division starter. He hit .263 with just three homers and four steals in 122 games at High-A last year, but he could hit for a slightly better average as he moves up the organizational ladder. Look for him to spend most of 2016 with Double-A Biloxi.
Cliff Pennington signed a two-year contract with the Los Angeles Angels on Tuesday.
The veteran switch-hitter posted a .579 OPS in 105 games between Toronto and Arizona last season, his worst mark in seven major league seasons. However, Pennington's signing fills a utility need for the Angels, allowing Taylor Featherston to return to Triple-A to play everyday.