As the Mariners hit the September home stretch, things obviously aren’t where they’d like them to be with four weeks remaining. Their general manager has been dismissed, and their playoff hopes all but extinguished in a year that began with lofty expectations.
Life couldn’t be much better for the Blue Jays right now, but there’s still a full month left in the regular season, so the road to the postseason is far from over.
Here are today’s minor moves from around the league… The Yankees announced today that they have outrighted infielder Cole Figueroa to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. The Yanks designated Figueroa, 28, for assignment earlier this week to make room for a series of September call-ups. He went 2-for-8 in a pair of games with New York at the big league level in 2015 but has spent most of the season at Scranton, where he’s batted .291/.361/.368 in 492 PAs. Figueroa can elect minor league free agency this winter.
Twins closer Glen Perkins told reporters today that he can “barely walk” due to back spasms, per La Velle E. Neal III of the Minneapolis Star Tribune (Twitter links). Perkins will not accompany the team to Houston for its weekend series and will instead remain in Minneapolis for treatment. Per the Pioneer Press’ Jace Frederick and MLB.com’s Rhett Bollinger (Twitter links), Perkins says he is “baffled” by the recurrence of back pain, as he felt fine after recording a save on Tuesday and believed himself to be 90 to 95 percent healed. Instead, he awoke Wednesday to the realization that he could barely get out of bed. It’s not known how long Perkins will be sidelined, but the injury makes the Twins’ acquisitions of Kevin Jepsen and Neal Cotts look that much more important. That duo, along with Trevor May, who has temporarily converted to a reliever (with strong results), will figure to play a key role as the Twins hope to remain in Wild Card contention. Here’s more from their division… Alexei Ramirez hopes to return to the White Sox in 2016, he tells Colleen Kane of the Chicago Tribune. “This was the team that gave me the opportunity to play in the big leagues and I want to spend the rest of my career here,” said Ramirez via interpreter. Chicago holds a $10MM option with a $1MM buyout on the 33-year-old Ramirez, essentially making it a $9MM decision for the Sox.
Four months after filling in for Justin Verlander in the Tigers’ rotation, Kyle Lobstein is back for another shot as a starter. The left-hander was activated from the 60-day disabled list Thursday after missing half of the season recovering from a left shoulder injury.
Giants right-hander Tim Lincecum underwent season-ending hip surgery this morning, tweets Jon Heyman of CBS Sports. Giants GM Bobby Evans said Thursday in a KNBR radio appearance (hat tip: Hank Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle). Said Evans: “He won’t be able to come back this season. That’s evident. He went to Colorado to see a specialist and get a second opinion and get an evaluation with the prospect that he will have surgery. The next step for him is to do everything he can and get back and get well, but it’s going to take him out for the season. What that leads to in terms of his progression healthwise will dictate what opportunities he has with us or elsewhere.” As Schulman notes, the injury may very well bring to a close Lincecum’s historic career as a member of the Giants. Selected with the 10th overall pick in the 2006 draft, Lincecum debuted in 2007 as a hard-throwing 23-year-old, tossing 146 1/3 innings of 4.00 ERA ball and averaging better than a strikeout per inning with initially shaky control. The control woes quickly dissipated, however, as Lincecum won consecutive Cy Young Awards in his next two seasons. From 2008-11, there were few pitchers in the game that were decisively better than “The Freak,” whose unorthodox delivery and dominant results won the hearts of Giants fans
Which Arizona Fall League roster has the most talent? Who will be the first big leaguer from the 2015 Draft? MLBPipeline.com’s Jim Callis responds to fans’ questions about baseball’s future stars.
Mark Mathias’ career is just beginning, but he may never have as good of a game as he did Wednesday. The Indians’ No. 21 prospect homered and tripled as part of a 4-for-5 performance, while his career-high six RBIs proved to be the difference in Class A Short Season Mahoning Valley’s 11-5 victory over Auburn
Although no team is eligible to clinch a playoff berth quite yet, the postseason picture is starting to take shape. With several intra-division series throughout September, there will be no shortage of meaningful games as the season winds down and the field is narrowed to 10.