Loney announced his retirement from baseball Friday, Brian McTaggart of MLB.com reports.
Loney hit .284/.336/.410 with 108 homers in 11 major-league seasons. He's been out of the big leagues since 2016, spending time in Korea and in the independent Atlantic League.
Loney signed with the Sugar Land Skeeters of the Atlantic League on Tuesday as a two-way player, JJ Cooper of Baseball America reports.
Loney was considered by some scouts to be a better pitcher than hitter back when he was drafted in 2002. He went on to have an 11-year career as a first baseman, posting a .284/.336/.410 line at the plate. The 34-year-old has been out of the big leagues since 2016 and hasn't posted an above-average batting line since 2014, but the rise of interest in two-way players could give Loney at least an outside chance at returning to the majors should his arm look good in the Atlantic League.
Loney agreed Tuesday with the LG Twins of the Korea Baseball Organization on a $350,000 contract for the remainder of the season, Jeeho Yoo of the Yonhap News Agency reports.
Loney has been out of baseball since late May after he was unable to parlay minor-league contracts he signed earlier this season with the Rangers, Tigers and Braves into a big-league roster spot. Since the 33-year-old didn't have the desire to slum it the minors following 11 seasons in the majors, he'll instead head abroad to continue his career. Given his age, it's unlikely that Loney will generate much interest from MLB teams next winter even if he's able to play productively during his time in Korea.
Loney was granted his release by the Braves on Monday.
With the Braves bringing Matt Adams to fill their void at first base, Loney saw the writing on the wall that his services were no longer needed. His vast big-league experience and the .704 OPS he posted with the Mets last season make it hard to believe that he'll have a very hard time finding a new home in free agency.
Loney likely will join Triple-A Gwinnett on Friday, Mark Bowman of MLB.com reports.
It was just a matter of when. The Braves inked Loney to a minors deal Thursday after Freddie Freeman (wrist) was hit by a pitch that will sideline him for at least two months. They feel they can get by with what they have on the big-league roster, though, so Loney will camp out until needed. They'll piece together work at first base with Rio Ruiz and Jace Peterson, who may also share third base until Adonis Garcia (Achilles) returns. That'll likely happen next week.
Loney will report to Triple-A Gwinnett, Mark Bowman of MLB.com reports.
Despite Freddie Freeman landing on the disabled list with a wrist fracture, Loney will have to earn his spot on Atlanta's major-league roster. Loney has yet to perform well at the Triple-A level this season. Prior to joining the Braves, he was a member of the Tigers' organization and played at Triple-A Toledo, where he owned a bleak .229 batting average.
Loney agreed to a minor-league contract with the Braves on Thursday, Buster Olney of ESPN reports.
This seems to be a direct response to the news that Freddie Freeman (wrist) will be out for at least eight weeks. Loney was with the Rangers during spring training, then spent time with the Tigers during the beginning of the regular season, but he was subsequently released after batting just .229 during his brief stint with the Mud Hens. It's unclear if the Braves intend to ease him back into action or deploy him as their primary first baseman from the get-go, but things should become clear in the near future.
Loney was released by the Tigers on Sunday, John Wagner of The Blade reports.
Loney -- who also turned 33 on Sunday -- signed a minor-league deal with the Tigers in mid-April. He never ended up getting any game action in at the minor-league level, however, and is now free to look for work elsewhere with another organization.
Loney signed a minor-league contract with the Tigers on Wednesday.
Loney went through close to a full spring training with the Rangers, but he will need to knock the rust off a bit more at extended spring training before reporting to a full-season affiliate (presumably Triple-A Toledo). The 32-year-old has played at a below-replacement level each of the last two seasons, so it's hard to see him getting a chance without an injury to Miguel Cabrera or Victor Martinez.
Loney was released from his minor-league contract with the Rangers on Monday.
A non-roster invitee, Loney went just 8-for-46 with one home run (.174/.224/.261) through 16 spring games, so it isn't too much of a surprise to see him released. The 32-year-old slashed .265/.307/.397 across 366 plate appearances as the Mets' backup first baseman last year, and he'll now look to catch on with another organization in a similar role.
Loney signed a minor-league deal with the Rangers on Friday, Fanragsports.com reports.
His deal would expand to $1M if he is able to make the major league club. Loney backed up Lucas Duda at first base last season, and slashed .265/.307/.397 across 366 plate appearances in the process. It is unclear at this point where Loney would fit in with the Rangers' roster should he ultimately make the team.
Loney will start at first base in Thursday's wild-card matchup with the Giants.
Loney started just three of the Mets' last nine games at first base, but manager Terry Collins was forced to choose one of three sub-optimal options -- Loney, Lucas Duda, or Eric Campbell -- to start against Giants ace and southpaw Madison Bumgarner, and he opted to go with the best defender of the bunch. Loney will hit eighth in the Mets' batting order Wednesday night.
Loney, and not Lucas Duda, looks to be the starting first baseman for the Mets' Wild Card contest Wednesday against the Giants, Newsday reports.
Loney hit with the first group during batting practice and took more repetitions at first base Tuesday, signs that he is likely to get the nod. Neither player has had much success against Madison Bumgarner, but manager Terry Collins appears to be leaning towards having Loney start the game.
Loney went 2-for-4 with a go-ahead two-run home run in Saturday's 5-3 win over the Phillies.
The veteran first baseman snapped a 2-2 tie in the sixth with a 408-foot blast to right that plated Curtis Granderson, giving the Mets a lead they would hold. Loney has homers in back-to-back contests, providing four RBI over that span. He's been a solid presence for the Mets in Lucas Duda's extended absence, slashing .266/.308/.398 with 16 doubles, a triple, nine homers and 34 RBI over 342 at-bats.
Loney went 1-for-4 with a two-run homer in Wednesday's victory over the Marlins.
Loney had homered just once in his previous 150 at-bats before belting his eighth of the year in the second inning Wednesday. It's been a disappointing year for the 11-year veteran who's played in fewer games than he had in any of his previous eight campaigns. Loney's slash line of .263/.306/.388 this season is well off the 32-year-old's career marks of .284/.336/.409. In fairness, he's been decent in September, and when a righty is on the hill, Loney isn't a bad option.
Loney is not in the lineup for Tuesday's game against the Reds, according to Adam Rubin of ESPN.com.
Loney owns a woeful .413 OPS against left-handed pitchers this season, so it comes as little surprise that he is being held out against Reds starter Brandon Finnegan. Wilmer Flores will get the nod at first base for the Mets on Tuesday night.
Loney is out of Friday's lineup against the Nationals.
Wilmer Flores will start at first base and hit fifth while Loney gets the night off. Loney's production at the plate has been nonexistent in recent outings as he's gone just 1-for-18 (.056) over the last seven games.
Loney singled three times in five at-bats and scored three runs Thursday in St. Louis.
Considering that it looked like Loney's career in the majors was just about over this spring, his contributions to the Mets' lineup since they picked him up from San Diego have to rate as a smashing success on a personal level. There's not much fantasy value in Loney's high-contact, low-power, no-speed approach though.
Loney is not in the lineup for Saturday's game against the Giants, Maria Guardado of the Star-Ledger reports.
Wilmer Flores will take over at first base against lefty Matt Moore, as is standard whenever the Mets face a southpaw. Loney stills owns a respectable line against right-handed pitching for the season, but he has been in a miserable funk of late, posting a .458 OPS (with one extra-base hit) in 59 plate appearances this month.
Loney is in the lineup and batting fifth Tuesday against the Diamondbacks, Maria I. Guardado of NJ Advance Media reports.
Loney sitting out the last two games, Loney will return to his normal spot at first base. Loney is just 2-for-19 over the last seven days, but will look to get back on track when the Mets face Brandon Shipley and the Diamondbacks.
|Minor League Batting Stats|
|2015||AFA-Charlotte Stone Crab||3||11||0||4||1||0||0||0||--||3||0||0||.364||.364||.455|