Angels optimistic Erick Aybar will avoid the disabled list

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Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times reports that Erick Aybar “did agility drills and rode an exercise bike for about 20 minutes” today and “the Angels are confident the shortstop won’t need to go on the disabled list.”
Aybar appeared to have suffered a major leg injury when Casey McGehee slid into him while breaking up a double play Monday night, saying later that he was “scared that day … I thought I was hurt bad when it happened.”
However, an MRI exam revealed merely a hyper-extended knee and Mike Scioscia said today that “he’s feeling a lot better.” Incidentally, while he hasn’t watched the replay of McGehee’s slide, Aybar said he “had no problem with it” because “he was trying to take me out and slid hard, I was trying to catch the ball.”
Maicer Izturis initially stepped in for Aybar at shortstop, but now that he’s also injured Brandon Wood is starting there this afternoon for the second straight game. Wood played shortstop extensively in the minors before shifting primarily to third base last season and at this point his bat is a much bigger question mark than his glove.

Shawn Tolleson becomes a free agent

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The Rangers outrighted reliever Shawn Tolleson off the 40-man roster on Wednesday. Rather than accept the assignment to Triple-A Round Rock, Tolleson has opted to become a free agent, Rangers executive VP of communications John Blake reports.

Tolleson, 28, emerged as a closer for the Rangers in 2015, but his follow-up campaign this year was dreadful. He finished with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He eventually went on the 60-day disabled list with a back injury.

Despite the nightmarish season, it’s easy to see a team deciding to take a flier on Tolleson for the 2017 season.

Indians strongly considering starting Carlos Santana in left field sans DH

TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 19:  Carlos Santana #41 of the Cleveland Indians celebrates after hitting a solo home run in the third inning against Marco Estrada #25 of the Toronto Blue Jays during game five of the American League Championship Series at Rogers Centre on October 19, 2016 in Toronto, Canada.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
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Indians slugger Carlos Santana hasn’t played in the outfield in a major league game since 2012, but the Indians are strongly considering starting him in left field for Game 3 of the World Series at Wrigley Field on Friday,’s Jordan Bastian reports. As the game is hosted in a National League park, there is no DH rule in effect, so the Indians might otherwise have to keep Santana on the bench.

Santana is hitless in six at-bats in the World Series thus far, but he has drawn two walks. He has overall not had a great postseason, carrying an aggregate .564 OPS in 40 plate appearances since the beginning of the playoffs. Still, during the regular season, he had an .865 OPS so he can certainly be a threat on offense at any given moment.