The Indians have announced that they’ve optioned rookie outfielder Tyler Naquin to Triple-A Columbus. They’ve also recalled Cody Anderson, who will start today’s game against the Royals. With Naquin heading down, it appears Rajai Davis will take over as the Indians’ everyday center fielder. The move initially appears to be a somewhat surprising one, since Naquin has hit .315/.327/.426 this season. There does appear to be some logic to the move, however. Naquin struck out 19 times against one walk, and he has limited Triple-A experience. The Indians also have more outfield options than they did at the beginning of the season with Michael Brantley and Lonnie Chisenhall having returned from the disabled list. It might also be worth noting that if Naquin plays for a few weeks in the minors this season, the Indians can control him for an extra year, potentially allowing him to reach free agency after 2022 rather than 2021. Here’s more from the Central divisions.
- Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas has been placed on the 15-day disabled list with a thumb fracture, as Rustin Dodd of the Kansas City Star and other reporters have noted. Moustakas hurt himself last week in Anaheim on a tag at third. The Royals have recalled Cheslor Cuthbert to take Moustakas’ spot on their active roster. Moustakas (.258/.314/.536 this season) is one of the very few Royals position players who have hit well this year, so his absence should be a blow to the Kansas City offense.
- Members of the Pirates are relieved that MLB has canceled their planned two-game series against the Marlins in Puerto Rico later this month, Bill Brink of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette writes. The trip was intended to be part of the league’s celebration of Roberto Clemente Day, which celebrates the legendary Pirate and Puerto Rican, but players expressed concern about the spread of the Zika virus, which could impact their families. “[W]hen we sat down with the CDC and they gave us a thorough presentation, we felt that the risk to the players and the players’ families was just too significant to proceed,” says Pirates union representative Gerrit Cole.