Hanley Ramirez limited to pinch-running for rest of season


After sitting out a week with an elbow injury Hanley Ramirez played last night, but was limited to pinch-running duties and Joe Frisaro of MLB.com reports that he’s “basically out for the season.”
Ramirez will continue to be available as a runner, but won’t be able to hit or play defense in the Marlins’ final six games. That means he’ll finish the season hitting .300/.378/.475 with 21 homers and 32 steals in 142 games, which is both an excellent year for a shortstop and a big dropoff from his 2007-2009 production.
During that three-year stretch he posted OPS totals of .948, .940, and .953, while this year’s mark is “only” .853. Of course, an .853 OPS still ranks second to only Troy Tulowitzki among all MLB shortstops. Ramirez has been merely All-Star caliber instead of MVP caliber.

Blue Jays sign Danny Espinosa to minors deal

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Free agent middle infielder Danny Espinosa signed a minor-league deal with the Blue Jays, the team announced Saturday. The deal includes an invite to spring training, where Espinosa is scheduled for his first split-squad game against the Orioles this afternoon.

Espinosa, 30, was inked to another minor-league deal with the Yankees in January. The veteran infielder was competing for an infield job until the team picked up second baseman Neil Walker on a one-year, $4 million deal last Monday. Prior to his release, he slashed .160/.276/.320 with one home run through his first 12 games with the Yankees this spring. He didn’t fare much better in the majors last year, either, batting a cumulative .173/.245/.278 with six home runs and a .523 OPS in 295 PA for the Mariners and Rays.

Blue Jays starting shortstop Troy Tulowitzki is still dealing with a bone spur in his heel and has officially been ruled out for Opening Day, which could clear a path for Espinosa to claim a starting role in Toronto. Of course, he won’t be the only candidate under consideration — Yangervis Solarte and Aledmys Diaz are still in the mix as well, though no final decision appears to be made just yet.