This just about sums up how slow this Saturday afternoon has been.
According to Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com, the Yankees have signed right-hander Brian Anderson and left-hander Andy Sisco to minor league contracts. Both receive invites to major league spring training.
Anderson, who turns 29 next March, converted to a pitcher in the Royals organization this past season after compiling a .227/.290/.370 batting line over 833 major league plate appearances as an outfielder. He did well in his transition, posting a 2.08 ERA and 17/5 K/BB ratio over 17 1/3 innings between rookie ball, High-A Burlington and Triple-A Omaha, but opted for free agency after being removed from the 40-man roster earlier this month. He reportedly throws his fastball in the low 90s and also features a slider and a changeup, so this is the very definition of low-risk/high-reward as far as bullpen-types go.
Sisco, who turns 28 in January, hasn’t pitched in the big leagues since 2007 due to Tommy John surgery. He posted a 4.32 ERA and 75/36 K/BB ratio over 66 2/3 innings with Double-A Richmond in the Giants’ organization this past season. The former 2001 second round pick of the Cubs has always struggled with his command, but Rosenthal writes that Sisco is throwing 95 mph in winter ball. Worth a shot.
Cubs’ outfielder Kyle Schwarber will return to the playing field on Saturday, per a report by the Chicago Tribune’s Mark Gonzales. The club’s prized left fielder suffered a season-ending injury when he collided with Dexter Fowler back in April, tearing both his ACL and LCL and undergoing intensive knee surgery later that month.
While no nerve damage was discovered during the surgery, the Cubs have kept a close eye on Schwarber during his recovery and put a kibosh on any part-time or full-time role with the team until the spring of 2017. Getting a few reps in during the Arizona Fall League appears to be the last step in the 23-year-old’s rehab process. He will be part of the Mesa Solar Sox’ ‘taxi squad,’ making him eligible for games on Wednesdays and Saturdays only.
Schwarber batted .246/.355/.487 with 16 in 69 games with the Cubs during his debut season in 2015. He will be added to the Mesa Solar Sox roster in advance of their set against the Salt River Rafters on Saturday evening.
The Game: Los Angeles Dodgers @ Chicago Cubs NLCS Game 6
The Time: 8:00 PM EDT
The Place: Wrigley Field, Chicago
The Channel: FS1
The Starters: Kyle Hendricks (Cubs) vs. Clayton Kershaw (Dodgers)
We’re pulling out the big guns for this one. The Cubs took Los Angeles by storm again in Game 5, closing out their road trip with an eight-run spread over the Dodgers, and tonight they’ll try to clinch the NLCS on home turf in Game 6.
Pitching-wise, it’s a rematch of Game 2 with Kyle Hendricks (16-8, 2.13 ERA) and Clayton Kershaw (12-4, 1.69 ERA) on the mound. Kershaw took the first set against the Cubs, going seven scoreless innings with six strikeouts in Game 2 while Hendricks held the Dodgers to a single run over 5 1/3 innings. Adrian Gonzalez was the only Dodger to capitalize on Hendricks’ cutter, going yard in his first at-bat to generate a 1-0 lead.
The Cubs’ biggest strength so far this series has been an electric offense, something the Dodgers have struggled to replicate against left-hander Jon Lester and Joe Maddon’s airtight bullpen. While they’ve already beaten Hendricks at Wrigley Field once this October, they’ll need Kershaw to go the distance in another playoff gem if they intend to keep the Cubs’ championship hopes at bay with a 3.4-run average. Should Kershaw and his crew knot the series again, the tiebreaker will fall to Rich Hill and Jake Arrieta in Game 7.