As you may recall, Dodgers right-hander Ronald Belisario was mysteriously placed on the restricted list earlier this week for the second time this season. Belisario’s agent Paul Kinzer originally used the word “anxiety” to describe the reason for the pitcher’s absence, but a source tells Dylan Hernandez and Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times that he actually left the team in order to receive treatment in a substance abuse program.
The source would not identify the substance for which Belisario is receiving treatment.
Belisario was arrested in June of 2009 on suspicion of driving under the influence. Because of the charge, the 27-year-old right-hander had difficulty obtaining a work visa from his native Venezuela and was forced to miss the first five weeks of spring training. He began the year on the restricted list before making his season debut on April 21.
Belisario has a 3.79 ERA and 1.21 WHIP in 35 relief appearances with the Dodgers this season, posting 24/13 K/BB ratio over 35 2/3 innings. He can remain on the restricted list for a maximum of 30 days.
The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.
Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.
Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.
The Phillies announced on Tuesday that the club traded pitcher Alec Asher to the Orioles for a player to be named later.
Asher, 25, was the victim of a roster crunch. He was not going to make the 25-man roster and the starting rotation at Triple-A Lehigh Valley was already full. The Phillies acquired him from the Rangers in the July 2015 Cole Hamels trade.
Asher had good results in 27 2/3 innings in the big leagues last year, posting a 2.28 ERA with a 13/4 K/BB ratio. While it didn’t show in those stats, the right-hander sometimes struggles with command and he doesn’t miss bats often enough to make up for it. The Orioles, however, are happy to add some pitching depth.