Akinori Iwamura unclaimed on waivers, optioned to Triple-A

1 Comment

After designating Akinori Iwamura for assignment last week Pirates general manager Neal Huntington said “a small number of teams have expressed mild interest” in trading for him, but Iwamura and the $2.9 million remaining on his contract passed through waivers unclaimed yesterday.
Various reports suggest that the Pirates were willing to eat the rest of Iwamura’s contract, but ultimately couldn’t find a team interested in giving up anything for him. Apparently the “mild interest” was very mild.
Iwamura is now off the 40-man roster, but accepted an assignment to Triple-A because not doing so would have meant forfeiting the rest of his guaranteed salary. While in Indianapolis the 31-year-old infielder will try to recoup some of the value lost by hitting .182 and looking slow defensively, but he’s probably facing an uphill climb to make it back to the majors.

Brewers place Eric Thames on disabled list with torn UCL in left thumb

Jeff Curry/Getty Images
Leave a comment

On Wednesday, the Brewers placed first baseman Eric Thames on the 10-day disabled list with a torn UCL in his left thumb. In a corresponding roster move, the Brewers recalled pitcher Brandon Woodruff from Triple-A Colorado Springs.

Thames, 31, exited Tuesday’s game against the Royals before the bottom of the ninth inning. After the game, manager Craig Counsell expressed concern about his thumb. As MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy reports, Brewers GM David Stearns says that surgery is likely but not definite, but that he expects Thames to be back for a “significant” portion of the 2018 season.

Thames was hitting quite well for the Brewers, owning a .250/.351/.625 triple-slash line along with seven home runs and 13 RBI in 74 plate appearances. Jesus Aguilar should handle first base while Thames is out. Ryan Braun could also see some action at first base.