Having lost 19 of 29, the struggling White Sox won’t rest on their laurels after acquiring right-hander James Shields on Saturday. General manager Rick Hahn said today that the Shields trade won’t be the team’s last move, noting that the Sox have the money and prospects to make more deals (Twitter link via Bruce Levine of 670 The Score). They could seek a left-handed bat and-or a setup man, according to Levine (Twitter link).
More from around the AL:
- The last-place Rays aren’t ready to sell yet, but they could be “very active” in shopping players prior to the deadline if they don’t begin climbing up the standings, FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reports. The Rays are deep in both pitching and outfielders, two areas that will be in demand, and infielder Steve Pearce could also draw plenty of interest. After a disappointing showing last season, Pearce has returned to his 2014 form in slashing .302/.389/.527 with eight home runs and nearly as many walks (18) as strikeouts (22) in 149 plate appearances. The 33-year-old, who’s on a palatable $4.75MM salary, is scheduled to become a free agent at season’s end.
- The Rangers are likelier to use their assets to upgrade their pitching – both the rotation and bullpen – than make a deal for Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy, says Rosenthal. While no buyer has been connected to Lucroy more than the Rangers in recent months, their backstops have exceeded expectations this season and the injured Robinson Chirinos is nearing a return.
- In other Rangers news, the team will make a concerted effort to get infielder Jurickson Profar more playing time if he continues performing well, writes Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News. “It’s important he plays,” president and general manager Jon Daniels said. “That doesn’t necessarily mean every day, but we want to keep him in the flow and keep him going.” The former elite prospect has collected 12 hits, including two home runs, in his first 33 plate appearances this year. If Profar continues holding his own, Prince Fielder, Mitch Moreland and Elvis Andrus will all be at risk of losing playing time.
- Athletics right-hander Sonny Gray will start for the club Sunday after he made a quick recovery from the trapezius strain that forced him to the disabled list two weeks ago (via John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle). Gray performed like an ace over his first two-plus seasons in the majors from 2013-15, but he got off to an uncharacteristically awful start this year before landing on the DL. Manager Bob Melvin attributes that, at least in part, to the injury. “A lot of the command issues stemmed from what was going on in his trap,” he said. “He wasn’t able to extend like he wanted to and had a little trouble commanding the baseball. So those issues are resolved.” Gray will now try to improve on the 6.19 ERA and 4.50 BB/9 he posted over his first nine starts (48 innings) of 2016.