Erick Aybar shut down for season with possible sports hernia

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Erick Aybar will be examined by a specialist today to determine if he has a sports hernia, but regardless of the news the Angels have shut down the shortstop for the remainder of the season.
Aybar injured his groin two weeks ago, but played through the pain until last Wednesday when he aggravated things while attempting to make a diving play defensively. He hasn’t played since and will finish the year hitting .254/.306/.333 in 132 games, which represents a 58-point drop in batting average and 137-point drop in OPS compared to his career-best campaign last season.
Brandon Wood has started five straight games in place of Aybar at shortstop and figures to see regular starts there for the final two weeks in what may prove to be his last chance to show he still belongs in the Angels’ long-term plans.

The Cards dealt Stephen Piscotty to the A’s, in part, so he could be near his ailing mother

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Last night we wrote about the rumored deal between the Cardinals and the Athletics for Stephen Piscotty. The deal is now official, with Piscotty going to Oakland for minor leaguers Yairo Munoz and Max Schrock.

Something else emerged about the deal today: a big reason why St. Louis traded Piscotty to Oakland as opposed to another team was so that he could be near his mother, who was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s disease last May. Piscotty and his family are from Pleasanton, California, about 35 miles from Oakland.

Here’s Cardinals GM John Mozeliak:

This was certainly a baseball trade — Piscotty became expendable for the Cardinals after they acquired Marcell Ozuna yesterday — but it was one which could’ve been made with any team with a couple of red or white chip prospects. That Mozeliak considered Piscotty’s personal situation in making the deal with the A’s is a credit to him and his staff.

The 26-year-old Piscotty hit .235 with nine homers and 39 RBIs in 107 games last season. He has hit .268 with 38 homers and 163 RBIs in 2+ major league seasons. He agreed to a six-year, $33.5 million contract extension last spring.

As for the prospects in return: Munoz, 22, hit .300 with 13 homers and 68 RBIs this year for Double-A Midland and Triple-A Nashville. Schrock, 23, batted .321 with seven homers and 46 RBIs for Midland, and was a Texas League All-Star.