Francisco Rodriguez was placed on the restricted list in mid-August after allegedly assaulting his girlfriend’s father inside the walls of Citi Field. He did not throw another pitch and was not paid over the last month-plus of the regular season.
Hey may never pitching again for the Mets, but, according to Adam Rubin of ESPN New York, K-Rod plans to get back to live baseball in early November.
The 28-year-old is close to being recovered from the torn right thumb ligament that he suffered in the alleged assault and has made plans to participate in the Venezuelan Winter League. Rodriguez turned in a 2.20 ERA, 67/21 K/BB ratio and 1.15 WHIP over 57.1 innings this season while converting 25 of 30 saves. He still has the goods and is likely to find another gig if the Mets want to cut ties completely.
Rodriguez and the Mets are close to agreeing on a settlement for the remaining $11.5 million on K-Rod’s current deal. He also has a $17.5 million vesting option for 2012 that will factor into the final number.
The Athletics followed Friday’s 3-0 shutout with a rookie-led home run derby on Saturday afternoon, watching not one, not two, but three rookies belt their first major league home runs off of the White Sox’ James Shields.
Right fielder Matt Olson was the first to strike, taking Shields deep on a first-pitch, two-run blast in the first inning for his first home run in 49 major league plate appearances:
Fellow outfielder Jaycob Brugman duplicated his teammate’s results in the second inning with a solo home run, his first extra-base hit of any kind since he made his debut on June 9:
In the third, with a comfortable 4-0 lead backing two scoreless frames from Oakland right-hander Daniel Gossett, Franklin Barreto took his shot at Shields. After getting the call several hours prior to Saturday’s game, he became the fastest of the three rookies to record his first big league homer, going yard on a 2-2 changeup and driving in Bruce Maxwell to give the A’s a six-run advantage.
The Athletics currently lead the White Sox 8-2 in the top of the sixth inning.
The Athletics called up their top prospect on Saturday, inserting shortstop Franklin Barreto into the lineup for their second game against the White Sox. Barreto was originally scheduled to make his major league debut on Sunday, but got a head start after Jed Lowrie sustained a minor knee sprain in Friday’s 3-0 win and was scratched from Saturday’s lineup.
Barreto, 21, has been rapidly climbing the rungs of the A’s minor league system after getting dealt by the Blue Jays in 2014. He got his first taste of Triple-A action late last year, going 6-for-17 with three RBI and getting caught stealing in two attempts. He fared little better this spring, slashing .281/.326/.428 with eight home runs and a .754 OPS through his first 309 PA in Nashville.
While his minor league production has been solid, if underwhelming for a prospect of his caliber, the A’s are expected to give the rookie infielder a long leash with both Marcus Semien and Chad Pinder sitting on the disabled list. Pinder landed on the 10-day DL after suffering a left hamstring strain on Friday. Semien, meanwhile, is still working his way back from the 60-day DL with a right wrist fracture and likely won’t rejoin the team until he completes a rehab assignment with High-A Stockton.