You’re not going to believe this, but in the wake of the Cardinals trading for a white middle infielder with moderate-at-best skills yesterday, someone has written a column praising him as a scrappy gritty hard worker, complete with a David Eckstein comparison. I’m so shocked that, as we speak, I’m clutching my pearls and hoping my fainting couch is right behind me where I left it.
But how scrappy is Ryan Theriot? Matt Sebek tries to figure it out, and the results may be the all-time best deconstruction of scappiosity ever written. If you think it’s just about being white and otherwise untalented you don’t know what scrappiness truly is. The click is worth it for the chart alone. I don’t literally laugh out loud very often, but Sebek’s column had me laughing out loud. Literally.
We learned on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu won one of the final two spots in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Brandon McCarthy has won the other, Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register reports. Alex Wood was McCarthy’s competitor for the spot.
McCarthy, 33, posted a 4.85 ERA across four appearances spanning 13 innings this spring, yielding seven earned runs on 14 hits and a walk with seven strikeouts. Wood, a southpaw, gave up five earned runs in six innings against the Reds on Tuesday, which might have factored into the decision.
Last season, McCarthy made nine starts and one relief appearance, posting a 4.95 ERA with a 44/26 K/BB ratio in 40 innings. In the event McCarthy falters, the club has Wood as well as Julio Urias and the injured Scott Kazmir as potential replacements.
The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.
Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.
Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.