A pair of Twins pitchers are set to resume throwing tomorrow, according to statements from each via Twitter. Righty Trevor May, who is contributing at MLBTR while working back from Tommy John surgery, says he will begin his march back in earnest. That drew a reply from southpaw Hector Santiago, who says he’ll do the same; he has been out for nearly a month with what the team called upper thoracic back pain and discomfort. There’s no expectation that May will return during the 2017 season, as his procedure took place this March. But Santiago conceivably could. The 29-year-old has every incentive to do just that, as he’s slated to hit the market this fall and would surely like a chance to improve upon the subpar results he has produced during his time in Minnesota.
More from the game’s Central divisions…
- While the Twins had some other possible trade chips to move, the team never came close to making any deals beyond those it completed, assistant GM Rob Antony tells Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN (Twitter link). There was little in the way of rumors surrounding shorter-term assets like Ervin Santana, Brian Dozier or Eduardo Escobar prior to the deadline, so perhaps the team’s preference was simply to engage with other clubs on impending free agents such as Jaime Garcia and Brandon Kintzler. Speculatively speaking, righty Matt Belisle could be a name to watch in August. He’s playing on an eminently affordable one-year, $2.05MM deal and rebounded from an awful month of May with a solid June and a scoreless 12 2/3 frames (with a 13-to-2 K/BB ratio) in July.
- White Sox prospect Reynaldo Lopez, acquired in the offseason Adam Eaton trade, is forcing his way into the team’s big league plans, general manager Rick Hahn tells Dan Hayes of CSN Chicago. “He’s forcing the issue,” said Hahn. “He’s had several starts in a row that have been very impressive.” Indeed, Lopez has turned in a 2.16 ERA with a 54-to-11 K/BB ratio in his past 41 2/3 innings. Hahn also offered praise for Lucas Giolito’s recent work, though those numbers are skewed by a pair of drubbings in an otherwise solid run of 11 starts. Lopez recently appeared on the latest installment of Jason Martinez’s “Knocking Down the Door” series here at MLBTR and seems to be nearing his first Major League look with the ChiSox.
- Reds outfield prospect Jesse Winker, who was recalled from Triple-A this week, is in line for regular playing time in the Majors now, per Zach Buchanan of the Cincinnati Enquirer (Twitter link). The Reds tabbed Winker with the 49th overall pick in the 2012 draft, and he’s been considered among the game’s top 100 or so prospects for much of the past three years. Winker had a cup of coffee earlier this season but returned to Triple-A in short order, where he ultimately put together a .314/.395/.408 showing. Wrist injuries have led to a power outage for Winker over the past two seasons, but he looks to be regaining some of the pop he showed from 2013-15, as he’s homered in consecutive games for the Reds (including tonight).
- Buchanan also provides some updates on a trio of injured Reds players in a full column. Outfielder Scott Schebler, whose absence has helped create an opening for Winker, was diagnosed with a bruised rotator cuff following an MRI exam. He’s out for at least the next two to three weeks, per Buchanan. Injured righty Scott Feldman, meanwhile, threw a three-inning simulated game today, though the timeline on his return to the Majors isn’t yet clear. And second base prospect Dilson Herrera, who had a bone spur removed from his shoulder recently, will be cleared to begin throwing in three to four months. Buchanan’s column has more quotes and context from manager Bryan Price and Reds team doctor Timothy Kremchek, so Reds fans should take a look for more details.