Per a team release, the Indians have claimed righty Jordan Stephens off waivers from the White Sox. Stephens, 26, had a rough go at AAA-Charlotte this season, pitching to an 8.60 ERA/6.29 FIP while being torched for eight homers in 37 2/3 IP. He’ll reportedly be assigned to the club’s Double-A affiliate in Akron, OH.
Stephens has worked mostly as a starter to this point in his career, though FanGraphs’ Kiley McDaniel and Eric Longenhagen point to his “premium raw spin” on a 60-grade curveball as justification for a move to a bullpen, perhaps in a “multi-inning” relief role. Stephens’ fastball grades out as below big-league average, with most reports touting his solid command of a big-league-caliber cutter.
By latest count, Cleveland stands at a man over the maximum 40 on their extended roster, so a corresponding move would figure to come in short order. The club also must make room for righty Mike Clevinger, who’ll return from the 60-day IL to start Monday’s game at Texas.
With Jordan Stephens now apparently off of the White Sox 40-man reserve roster, this opens a spot for veteran OF Jon Jay who is currently at AAA Charlotte on a rehab assignment. Jay has yet to make his White Sox debut after signing as a free agent this past offseason. He will need to be activated or released in the coming days as his rehab assignment nears its conclusion.
Jay will have about 5 1/2 weeks to establish some deadline value, but even if he tears it up I’m not sure CWS can expect much of a return. CLE makes a lot of sense, but division rivals don’t make deadline deals, and Jay isn’t making league minimum which counts the Tribe out any way.
Yes. The White Sox will most certainly re-activate Jay from the IL rather than release him despite the presence of a couple of similar players on their 25-man roster who are producing well in Leury Garcia and Charlie Tilson. They would like to recoup something from a free agent signing that ultimately proved to be ill-advised when pal FA Manny Machado opted for the Padres mega contract instead of the White Sox package. In further hindsight, it’s probably just as well with the emergence of 3B Yoan Moncada and SS Tim Anderson as cornerstones on the left side of the infield. With 2B Nick Madrigal nearing his MLB debut and 1st round pick 1B Andrew Vaughn on a fast-track to the South Side, the White Sox future infield looks set. I’ve said it before and will say it again: The White Sox should have passed on Machado and put all their efforts into signing RF Bryce Harper who was the better long term fit with his high OPS left-handed bat.
Btw: It would not be unprecedented for the White Sox to simply release Jay either. They did just that with former free agent INF Jeff Keppinger back in May of 2014. Keppinger signed a 3-year deal with the White Sox and played one full season in 2013 before injuring himself. He was on the DL to begin the 2014 season and went through a full rehab assignment before the organization ultimately released him when it expired. They unsurprisingly found no takers after DFA’ing him and simply released him.
And they ate 8.5 million dollars with Keppinger!
And with those guaranteed dollars Keppinger was able to retire from professional baseball, not playing another game at the MLB or MiLB level ever since.
It’s funny, because I agree about Machado. I was not upset when SD snagged him away. I know the season’s not half over yet, but Moncada’s outplayed Machado so far. Even if Machado ends up with better numbers at the end of the year, it still probably won’t be a huge difference between the two. Plus, Moncada’s being paid $30MM less than Machado would’ve been for the Sox this year (and next).
The Sox had a bigger need with an OF than a 3B/SS this past Winter, and now the 3B/SS is even less of a need with the surges of both TA and Moncada. I don’t think the Sox ever had any shot at Harper because he wanted far more years than the Sox were willing to go for. But in theory, Harper would’ve been the better fit for the Sox than Machado.
Trade him to SD for Renfroe so he can be with his boy Manny
It will be interesting to see what adjustments will be made to the Tribe’s 40 man roster before Sunshine returns. It should be very refreshing to have Clevinger back.
Kluber, Zimmer and/or Carrasco to 60 day IL, depending on his prognosis. I imagine stamens is worried right now. I’m sure if Zimmer come available Martin is short lived…better defense and even struggling his bat is better than Martin
Regardless of Zimmer’s timetable, I wonder if the Indians are getting close to dropping Martin. Have Mercado full time in CF, Bauers sticks in LF.. And then give Bobby Bradley a shot at DH/1B.
Zimmer was bumped to the 60 day IL.
I would think the immediate move would be Cody Anderson to the 60 day IL.
As for the secondary move for when Clev returns.. I wonder if the Indians have seen enough of Hu at AAA.
Hu might even be first.
Hu’s on first.
He’s a pitcher. I don’t know a Hu on first.
Shaking your head? Who? You?
No… think abbot and castello..
I’m not sure why Zimmer and Kluber aren’t already on the 60 day IL.
Zimmer might be a candidate for it now, considering his latest setback in Goodyear. Might as well, since Mercado is playing just fine.
Hu might even be first.
Would be Kluber and Anderson to the 60. Anderson is already being paid arbitration money and already was optioned down so they don’t save anything by keeping him off the roster except for service time.
I’m unsure if this is what they *are* doing. But if Zimmer is kept on the minor league IL (he suffered that injury in AAA last year, they would be saving money and service time on him. They’ve done this before with Julian Merryweather.
Please tell me the approximate years Julian Merryweather played. I am having trouble remembering him and can’t find him on Baseball Reference.
I believe Julian is Floyd’s brother
Never mind. I found information about Julian
The Padres might trade for Jon Jay….that is the reason they signed Machado, after all……
LOL. It’s too bad that trade has little chance of occurring with the Padres already willing to deal OF’s from their active roster. It’s also just as unfortunate for the White Sox that the Padres don’t utilize a DH in the NL and already have an overpriced 1B in Eric Hosmer on hand since they would love to deal Manny Machado’s brother in-law Yonder Alonso as well.
Btw: If the Padres need any catching help the White Sox also have another Machado pal available in (BFF) Wellington Castillo. LMAO
I didn’t even know Jordan Stephens was placed on waivers.