I think a lot of the baseball world has gotten a jump start on their holiday weekend so there isn’t much news a-happenin’. There are a couple of games going down, however, one of which — Reds at Cubs — I have on while I’m working.
Fun development a few minutes ago: Ryan Dempster walked Johnny Gomes and Jay Bruce, and then the bases were loaded due to an error by Mike Fontenot. That brought up the pitcher, Bronson Arroyo. Dempster walked him on four straight pitches.
The pitcher. On four straight. I mean, sure, Arroyo has a little bit of pop in his bat for a pitcher, but how do you not throw that guy 75-percenters right down the pike and make him put the ball in play? If anyone wonders why Lou Piniella lookes half-dazed all the time, this is the reason why.
Dempster was just pulled after giving up five runs on only two hits. He struck out nine dudes, though, so it was a very LaLooshian performance. On some weird level I found his scuffling, off-kilter performance quite comforting as background noise on what has turned out to be a bit of a scuffling, off-kilter day.
Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that the Phillies signed pitcher Henderson Alvarez to a minor league deal. If he is added to the major league roster, he’ll earn $750,000 prorated.
Alvarez is still only 27 years old but hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2015 due to shoulder issues. He signed with the Long Island Ducks last month, making seven starts and posting a 3.94 ERA with a 13/14 K/BB ratio in 32 innings.
The Phillies learned that Vince Velasquez will undergo season-ending surgery and also placed Zach Eflin on the 10-day disabled list, so the club is just looking for pitching depth to help take them through the end of the season. Any innings that Alvarez is able to handle will be considered a bonus.
Mets third baseman David Wright will begin a minor league rehab assignment Tuesday with High-A St. Lucie. He’ll be the DH.
Wright has been sidelined since May of 2016, first with a cervical disc herniation and, more recently, a shoulder impingement. He has appeared in just 75 games since his last full season in 2014. Wright is under contract through 2020 and is owed $47 million after this year. For now insurance is picking up a large portion of that.
It’s possible he’ll make a return to the Mets before the season out as the competitive portion of their year is basically over and giving him a chance to see big league pitching before he begins what one hopes is a normal offseason might be a good confidence boost. What meaningful role he ever plays in the big leagues again, however, is decidedly up in the air.