Here are the latest minor moves from around the game:
- The Blue Jays announced that catcher Michael Ohlman has cleared outright waivers and accepted an assignment to Triple-A Buffalo. Ohlman had the option to elect free agency, having been previously outrighted in his career, but he’ll return to Buffalo in hopes of another big league opportunity with the Jays. The 26-year-old went 2-for-9 in his brief MLB debut with Toronto this year, and he’s slashed a more impressive .246/.388/.594 with seven homers and three doubles through 23 Triple-A contests.
- Right-hander Al Alburquerque has cleared waivers and been outrighted to Triple-A Omaha, the Royals announced on Tuesday. Kansas City designated the veteran 30-year-old for assignment over the weekend after just four innings with the big league bullpen. Alburquerque has totaled just six innings in the Majors over the past two seasons after serving as a regular in the Detroit ’pen from 2013-15. The hard-throwing Alburquerque has no trouble missing bats but has long been prone to control issue as well. Alburquerque has the option to reject the assignment in favor of free agency.
- Per an Orioles announcement, catcher Francisco Pena has been outrighted to Triple-A after clearing waivers. The out-of-options 27-year-old has seen limited action in the majors in recent years, but has slashed .249/.295/.452 in his 1,221 career plate appearances at Triple-A. While he’s a highly regarded defender, Pena may need to boost his on-base abilities before he’ll earn a full shot at the majors.
- The Phillies have released southpaw Mario Hollands, per Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com (via Twitter). Once a promising young reliever, Hollands seemingly never fully recovered from Tommy John surgery. The 28-year-old has produced middling results in the upper minors over the past two seasons since sitting out all of 2015. This year, he has allowed a dozen walks in his 13 frames at Double-A.
- Also hitting the open market is former Phillies righty Dalier Hinojosa, per Matt Eddy of Baseball America. The 31-year-old worked to a 1.51 ERA with 7.8 K/9 and 3.5 BB/9 through 35 2/3 MLB frames in 2015-16, but clearly hadn’t convinced teams that was sustainable. Hinojosa hasn’t yet pitched this year due to a shoulder injury.
- It seems that righty Daniel Bard is back at a career crossroads, as he has been released by the Cardinals, according to Eddy’s report. Bard, once an elite bullpen arm with the Red Sox, ran up 19 walks in 8 2/3 outings at the Double-A level as he has continued to struggle to stay in the zone.
- The Braves released veteran minor-leaguer Blake Lalli, per BA. The 34-year-old catcher saw a bit of action at the major league level last year, but he has mostly plied his trade in the upper minors in recent seasons. He was off to a rough start at the plate this year at Triple-A, with a .167/.226/.271 batting line through 53 plate appearances.
- Outfielder Tyler Holt has been released by the Dodgers, Eddy reports. Holt has seen action in each of the last three major league campaigns and appeared in 106 games last year with the Reds, but he’s slashing just .228/.306/.274 in 318 plate appearances at the game’s highest level. The 28-year-old was struggling badly in the upper minors with the Los Angeles organization, but will surely hope to regain some lost momentum with another organization.
- The White Sox have snapped up righty Jake Johansen, who was released recently by the Nationals, according to Eddy. A second round pick back in 2013, Johansen had failed to make the jump to the upper minors and was cut loose after allowing eight earned runs in 11 2/3 innings at Double-A this year.
- Veteran infielder Chris Nelson has joined the Royals on a minors deal, per Eddy. Once a semi-regular player with the Rockies, Nelson has bounced around in recent years and hasn’t seen any major league action since 2014. He spent time in 2016 at Triple-A with the Rockies organization, slashing .232/.273/.310 in 218 plate appearances.
- Finally, the Reds have added MLB veteran Vin Mazzaro on a minors deal. He had been working in indy ball, throwing six scoreless frames for the Somerset Patriots, but will now try to crack the bigs for the ninth consecutive year. Mazzaro had a nice run with the Pirates in 2013, but has not seen much MLB action since. He did work to a 3.22 ERA over 67 Triple-A frames last year, with 5.8 K/9 and 3.6 BB/9, though obviously he didn’t convince many teams with his underlying skills.
The independent ball pickups are honestly my favorite.
19 walks in 8 2/3? Yikes. Maybe he should just accept his fate and try something else.
Daniel Bard’s complete inability to throw a pitch in the zone is insane. I know the switch from the ‘pen to the rotation was a disaster, but I doubt anyone could have picked such a huge fall.
2013 – 15.1 IP, 27 BB
2014 – 0.2 IP, 9 BB (and 13 ER!)
2015 – No baseball
2016 – 3 IP, 13 BB
2017 – 8.2 IP, 19 BB
That’s 68 walks in his last 27.2 IP. Absolutely incredible.
He should just Rick Ankiel it at this point. He’s got a potent arm he just can’t hit the zone.
He should convert to the OF?
Ankiel did it. Owings did it.
An FYI for non-Dodger fans, Kenly Jansen was a catcher in MiLB for the Dodgers. He reversed Babe Ruth’s it, without the stick mind you. But he’s an ok switch hitter. Problem is why would they ever use him as one?
Personally I enjoy when a player has the mindset of changing to/from a pitcher/position player. Worst that can happen is it’s a failure but he still gets paid to play for a while. So thanks will watch you guy just to see…
The Yankees had a couple prospects in the 90s – Sam Millitello and Brien Taylor. They both suffered shoulder injuries. After that neither could throw strikes. Militello, who had a brief taste of major league success, threw 20 minor league innings after his injury, in which he walked 55 batters. Taylor, after the injury, threw 110 innings and walked 185 batters.
Will he WALK, away from the game?
Good stuff ^^^
And to add to that in the minors from 2013 onward he’s hit 17 batters and thrown 25 wild pitches in just 28 innings. It really is incredible.
And yet Mo, the Cardinals GM thought he could help the organization!?!? Wow! What a great judge of talent! This is why the Cardinals are in the situation they are in now!!!!! Matheney can only play the players who are signed for him by the General Manager. Same goes for all of the minor league managers. Thank goodness Michael Girsch is in charge of minor league player development!!!!!
Can someone calculate his ERA right now, just for S
Ooh. Holy handbags! I just found his stats. He’s in the Texas league right now with a 10.38 ERA. 2016 he threw a stunning 24.00 ERA and… are you ready for this? In 2014 he played in the South Atlantic League in A ball to the tune of… a 175.50 ERA! Whooooo!
His WHIP was 13.5. He pitched 0.2 innings, they hit 13 runs off him along with 9 walks and 7 hit batters!? Daniel! Please!!!