We hinted at the possibility last night and the Giants just made it official: Barry Zito is not on the team’s roster for the NLCS against the Phillies, according to Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News.
Zito was also left off the roster for the NLDS against the Braves. Madison Bumgarner, who yielded two runs over six innings in Game 4 against the Braves on Monday, is tentatively scheduled to pitch Game 4 against the Phillies next Wednesday.
There are actually no changes on the team’s roster from the previous round. Giants manager Bruce Bochy was reportedly considering carrying a third left-hander out of the bullpen against the lefty-heavy Phillies lineup, but he ultimately decided to keep right-hander Guillermo Mota over Zito or Dan Runzler.
Oft-injured pitcher Josh Johnson is retiring from baseball, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick is reporting.
Johnson, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2013. The right-hander underwent his third Tommy John surgery in September 2015 but wasn’t able to bounce back.
Johnson spent most of his career with the Marlins, but also pitched for the Blue Jays in the big leagues, as well as the Padres in the minors. He retires with a career 3.40 ERA, 915 strikeouts across 998 innings in the majors, and two All-Star nominations. Johnson led the National League with a 2.30 ERA in 2010, finishing fifth in NL Cy Young Award balloting. One wonders what he could have accomplished if he was able to stay healthy.
The Angels are nearing a multi-year deal with free agent third baseman Luis Valbuena, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. It’s believed to be a two-year contract with a third-year option.
Valbuena, 31, hit .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances in 2016. He missed most of the second half with a hamstring injury, for which he underwent surgery in late August.
Valbuena has played a majority of his career at third base, but also has extensive experience at second base and has racked up innings at first base and shortstop as well. He won’t play every day for the Angels, as Yunel Escobar lays claim to third base and C.J. Cron first base, but he will give them flexibility and a left-handed bat off the bench.