- The Tigers are bringing back right-handed pitcher Ricardo Pinto after he spent all of the 2021 season in Detroit’s minor league ranks. Pinto was previously a prospect of some note, pitching in the 2016 Futures Game in the Phillies organization before making his Major League debut a year later. A tough debut season has resulted in a whirlwind few years, as Pinto has since been stashed on various teams’ Triple-A rosters and made a tour through the KBO League in 2020. Between Double-A and Triple-A last year the right-hander pitched to a 4.29 ERA in 123 innings (23 starts), with solid peripherals dipping upon reaching Triple-A.
- The Braves have re-signed infielder Ryan Goins to a minor league pact. The 33-year-old Goins saw a good chunk of big league action from 2013-2017, serving as an oft-used utility player in Toronto. He’s bounced between a trio of teams since then, last suiting up at the major league level for the White Sox in 2020. The left-handed hitter will bring his versatile glove back to the Atlanta organization, where he spent all of his time last year in Triple-A.
- Drew Jackson and Christian Bethancourt are joining the A’s for the first time. Both players are incredibly versatile, as Jackson appeared everywhere but the catcher position for the Mets’ Triple-A affiliate last year. The 28-year-old Jackson sported a patient .251/.397/.424 line across 85 games, chipping in nine home runs and 24 stolen bases (in 27 tries). The 30-year-old Bethancourt was once a frequenter of top prospect lists as a catcher in Atlanta’s talent pipeline, but has recently bounced around trying to cut it as a two-way player. The pitching project didn’t gain much traction last year but the rest of the catcher’s play was encouraging, as he fielded four positions and slashed a solid .281/.339/.468 with 14 home runs across 92 games for the Pirates’ Triple-A team.
Although the team never made a formal announcement, the Braves agreed to a minor league pact with infielder Ryan Goins, as noted Baseball America’s Chris Hilburn-Trenkle in his latest roundup of minor league transactions. Goins is in camp and has collected two hits in six early spring plate appearances.
Goins, 33, has seen Major League time in parts of eight seasons, mostly with the Blue Jays but also with the Royals in 2018 and the White Sox from 2019-20. He’s never been much of a threat at the plate, as evidenced by a career .228/.278/.333 batting line in 1690 plate appearances at the MLB level, but Goins is a versatile defender with strong ratings at several positions. The bulk of his MLB work has come at second base (25 Defensive Runs Saved in 2095 innings), but he’s also graded out well at shortstop (7 DRS in 1460 innings) and at third base (average in 299 innings). Goins has seen brief stints in the outfield corners and at first base as well.
The Braves’ infield and bench is largely set, with Austin Riley slated for significant time at third base and both Jake Lamb and Johan Camargo behind him. Former Twins and Giants infielder Ehire Adrianza is in camp on a non-roster deal, vying for a spot as well. There may not be a clear path to a roster spot for Goins at the moment, but stashing Goins at their alternate site/Triple-A to begin the season would give the Braves some additional cover at multiple infield spots in the event of an injury on the Major League roster.
The White Sox have outrighted infielder Ryan Goins to their alternate site, James Fegan of The Athletic reports. Goins is now a member of their taxi squad. Additionally, Chicago released right-hander Drew Anderson.
The White Sox designated Goins for assignment on Monday, which came just over a month after they re-signed him to a minor league pact and selected his contract. The 32-year-old Goins took 14 trips to the plate as a member of the White Sox this season before they designated him, and he went hitless during that span. Of course, offense has never been a strong suit for Goins, who has combined for a .228/.278/.333 line across 1,690 plate appearances among the White Sox, Blue Jays and Royals.
The 26-year-old Anderson, formerly with the Phillies, was a minor league offseason pickup for Chicago who made just one appearance with the team this year. It went rather poorly for Anderson, who gave up six earned runs on four hits (including two homers) and two walks in 1 1/3 innings of an Aug. 8 loss to the Indians. The White Sox outrighted him shortly after that.
Given the flurry of transactions around the deadline, a number of players have been designated for assignment. This is, of course, the natural consequence of such a dramatic amount of shuffling to the roster via trade. These players will be available to the 29 other teams via waiver claim. We’ll use this post to track some of the more recent DFAs around baseball.
- The Marlins have designated left-hander Adam Conley for assignment, MLBTR has learned. The 30-year-old hasn’t pitched this season after going on the injured list in the wake of Miami’s clubhouse COVID-19 outbreak. Conley was a prominent member of the pitching staff, recently as a pure reliever, from 2015-19. He struggled to a miserable 6.53 ERA/5.19 FIP last season, although he posted much more palatable 4.09/3.60 marks the year prior.
- In perhaps the most surprising DFA of the day, the Phillies designated catcher Deivy Grullón for assignment, per the team. Grullon had been the Phillies presumptive third catcher after J.T. Realmuto and backup Andrew Knapp. The 24-year-old has long appeared on Philly prospect boards, making his first big-league appearance last season, going 1 for 9 in limited action. Rafael Marchan and Logan O’Hoppe are the other catchers in the Phillies’ 60-man player pool.
- Philadelphia also DFA’ed right-hander Reggie McClain. The 27-year-old McClain had appeared in 5 games this season with a 5.06 ERA across 5 1/3 innings. These moves came as a consequence not of trades, necessarily, but because Jay Bruce and Ranger Suárez both were reinstated from the injured list.
- The White Sox designated infielder Ryan Goins for assignment after activating Yolmer Sanchez, per Scott Merkin of MLB.com. Goings, 32, is a veteran of the Blue Jays and Royals. He appeared in 14 games for the White Sox this season, often as a pinch-runner. At the plate, he was 0 for 9 with a walk and a strikeout. Sanchez rejoins the White Sox after being designated for assignment by the Giants. Sanchez spent 2014 to 2019 with the White Sox.
- The Cubs DFA’ed Ian Miller and Hernan Perez, per Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune (Twitter links). Miller and Perez are making room for Andrew Chafin and Josh Osich, respectively, the pair of lefties acquired from the Diamondbacks and Red Sox. Miller, 28, is a speed specialist who appeared in just one game for the Cubs as a pinch-runner. Perez never cracked the rotation in Chicago after several years of regular reps with the Brewers. He appeared in just 3 games for the Cubs, going 1 for 6.
The White Sox announced that they have placed righty Reynaldo Lopez on the injured list with a shoulder strain. His timeline is not yet known. Fellow righty Ian Hamilton will take the active roster opening.
Lopez was bludgeoned for four earned runs in less than an inning of work in his 2020 debut. He had been hoping for a full and healthy campaign to rebound from a rough ’19 effort and set the stage for his first trip through arbitration.
Fortunately for the Chicago organization, the team’s top backup plan is still in place. Veteran southpaw Gio Gonzalez will step into the rotation opening.
Goins was just added to the White Sox mix after being released by the Athletics. The 32-year-old is a proficient defender but only a .230/.279/.335 career hitter.
Cuthbert, 27, had only received one plate appearance in the early going. He caught on with the White Sox after wrapping up a six-season run with the Royals, over which he turned in a .250/.300/.378 batting line.
The White Sox set their Opening Day roster Thursday, announcing that they’ve designated former top-10 pick Carson Fulmer for assignment. Chicago also signed old friend Ryan Goins to a minor league deal and assigned him to its alternate training site and selected the contracts of four players: infielder Cheslor Cuthbert, outfielder Nicky Delmonico, left-hander Ross Detwiler and right-hander Codi Heuer. Additionally, veteran utilityman Andrew Romine was released by the organization.
Sox fans will surely be glad to see Yoan Moncada activated from the injured list and placed on the Opening Day roster after previously being out with Covid-19. The White Sox also called up right-hander Jimmy Lambert and catcher Zack Collins from their alternate site.
It’s a disappointing outcome for the Sox and Fulmer alike. The former Vanderbilt star was at one point considered during his junior year to be a possible No. 1 overall pick, but he’s simply never put it together in the Majors. I explored the Fulmer conundrum at length during the league’s shutdown, looking at the right-hander’s lengthy history of struggles in the Majors and upper minors. Fulmer was touted as one of the surest big leaguers in that year’s draft, as even his critics felt he was a high-probability late-inning bullpen piece. Those with reservations about taking him at the top of the draft weren’t so much worried that he’d bust completely but that he’d thrive “only” as a reliever rather than a starter.
Fast forward a half decade, and Fulmer is an out-of-options righty with a career 6.56 ERA in the Majors and 5.39 ERA in Triple-A. As detailed in the previously linked piece on him, there are plenty of positive indicators in his arsenal, and I personally have wondered how he might fare working at the top of the zone with his four-seamer, but the win-now White Sox clearly didn’t feel he was among their 30 best options. Perhaps his struggles will be pronounced enough that he’ll clear waivers, but one can also imagine a non-contender rolling the dice on his once touted arm.
Of the players selected to the 40-man roster today, Delmonico and Detwiler have both appeared for the Sox in the past. Delmonico will give them a left-handed bench bat with sparse MLB success, while Detwiler can soak up some innings if need be — either as a spot starter or long reliever. Cuthbert was once a high-end Royals prospect but has never hit much in five MLB seasons. Heuer, meanwhile, was Chicago’s sixth-round pick in 2018 and posted dominant numbers in the minors last year. He has long-term bullpen potential for them, and the Sox are surely excited to get a glimpse of how he’ll fare against MLB opposition.
As for Goins, he’ll return to the organization for a second season after hitting .250/.333/.347 in 52 games with the Sox last year. The longtime Blue Jays infielder doesn’t have much of a track record at the plate — he’s a career .230/.279/.335 hitter — but he can play all over the infield and is generally considered a strong up-the-middle defender.
The Athletics announced they’ve released infielder Ryan Goins. The 32-year-old had been in the A’s Summer Camp player pool after joining the organization on a minor-league deal over the offseason.
Goins is most well-known for his time with the Blue Jays from 2013-17. Over that stretch, he logged pretty significant playing time in the middle infield. He’s long rated well defensively (especially at second base), but has never managed anything approaching a league average season at the plate. For his career, he carries just a .230/.279/.335 line (65 wRC+) in 1680 plate appearances.
Since leaving Toronto, Goins has suited up with the 2018 Royals and 2019 White Sox, marking seven consecutive seasons of big league action. He’ll presumably now look to latch on with another club looking to bolster its infield depth.
The Nationals and Yankees are tentatively scheduled to play on July 23, according to Joel Sherman and Andrew Marchand of the New York Post, which would make for a big Max Scherzer vs. Gerrit Cole pitching matchup to highlight Opening Day. It might still be at least a week or two before the 2020 schedule is officially finalized, however, as the league is still considering a number of factors, chief among them coronavirus outbreaks around the United States. “Better, the league believes, to take its time, see how the [COVID-19] testing of personnel goes this week and the preferences expressed in feedback from clubs,” Sherman and Marchand write. “So the current schedule can change drastically and, if it does, the union will have to provide its blessing again.”
More from around baseball…
- Tomorrow is the deadline for teams to submit their initial 60-man player pool, and details are already beginning to emerge about which players may or may not be included. The Twins’ taxi squad will include top prospects Royce Lewis, Alex Kirilloff, and Brent Rooker, SKOR North’s Darren Wolfson tweets. Caleb Thielbar, who rejoined Minnesota on a minors contract last winter, is also expected to be on taxi squad duty.
- The Athletics will initially split their player pool into two groups, Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports, with much of the big league roster training in Oakland and the taxi squad potentially training in nearby Stockton — the home of the Athletics’ Class-A affiliate — if a deal can be finalized with Stockton city officials. Offseason minor league signings Ryan Goins, Carlos Perez, Jordan Weems, and Lucas Luetge will all be in Oakland, while taxi squad players include such notable prospects as Tyler Soderstrom, Daulton Jefferies, Nick Allen, Dustin Fowler and (as per MLB.com’s Jesse Sanchez) Robert Puason.
- Slusser also provides updates on some Athletics players who were battling injuries during the spring but are now on track to be ready for Opening Day. A.J. Puk “has been throwing bullpen sessions for months” following a shoulder strain in the spring, and looks to be ready to begin the season in Oakland’s rotation. Right-hander Daniel Mengden is also ready to be part of the pitching mix after recovering from arthroscopic elbow surgery in February. After being sidelined with an intercostal strain during Spring Training, Stephen Piscotty said he is now “100 percent with no limitations.”
- The Rays and Rangers are the latest teams to commit to paying their minor leaguers through the end of July, as respectively reported by Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times and Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Minor leaguers in each organization will continue to receive their $400 weekly stipends for at least another month.
The A’s announced a spate of minor-league signings this afternoon, some of which were previously reported by Susan Slusser and Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle. On the pitching side, the club brought aboard left-hander Lucas Luetge and right-handers Ian Gardeck, Zach Lee, and Brian Schlitter. They confirmed the earlier-reported signing of Jaime Schultz. Oakland also added depth on the position player side, signing catcher Carlos Pérez, and infielders Eric Campbell, Nate Orf and Ryan Goins. All nine players will receive an invitation to MLB camp in spring training.
Of those players, only Gardeck doesn’t have some MLB experience. The former Giants’ farmhand tossed 18.2 relief innings with a 2.41 ERA last season for Tampa Bay’s AA affiliate in Montgomery. Campbell and Schlitter spent last season in the A’s organization, with Schlitter pitching in six MLB games for Oakland.
Except for Schlitter, only Goins reached the game’s highest level in 2019, his seventh straight year logging MLB action. The former Blue Jay took 163 plate appearances for the White Sox and slashed .250/.333/.347. That tops the .230/.279/.335 (65 wRC+) line the infielder has accumulated over his career. He, Campbell, and Orf, a former Brewers’ prospect, could all vie for a utility role this spring.
The Chicago organization noted that all four players will reach minor-league free agency at the conclusion of the World Series. Accordingly, they’ll soon hit the open market.
Banuelos, 28, made it back to the majors for the first time since his 2014 debut. But he scuffled to a 6.93 ERA in 50 2/3 frames with the White Sox.
Cordell and Skole also received somewhat longer looks in their second seasons of MLB action. The 27-year-old Cordell was given 247 plate appearances but managed only a .221/.290/.355 batting line. Skole posted a meager .208/.275/.236 output over eighty trips to the plate.
Of the group, Goins obviously has far and away the most extensive experience. The gritty, light-hitting infielder actually had something of a career year at the dish, turning in a .250/.333/.347 slash in 163 plate appearances. That translates to a personal-best 86 wRC+.