Brewers sign reliever Takashi Saito to one-year contract

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Takashi Saito and the Brewers have finalized a one-year contract, with Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reporting that the deal could pay the 41-year-old reliever up to $3.2 million based on incentives.

Saito can’t handle a full workload at this point in his career, rarely pitching on back-to-back days for the Braves this year, but he remains an elite reliever with a 2.83 ERA, .203 opponents’ batting average, and 69/17 K/BB ratio in 54 innings.

He figures to serve as John Axford’s primary setup man, although Saito could take over closing duties if Axford struggles after more or less coming out of nowhere to save 24 games with a 2.48 ERA as a 27-year-old rookie. Saito saved 81 games in three seasons with the Dodgers. And that Milwaukee pitching staff keeps looking better and better.

Angels hire Brad Ausmus as special assistant to the GM

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Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports that the Angels have hired former Tigers manager Brad Ausmus as a special assistant to GM Billy Eppler.

Ausmus, 48, managed the Tigers for four seasons, accruing a 314-332 (.486) record. The Tigers fired him after the 2017 season and hired former Twins manager Ron Gardenhire in his place.

Ausmus will assist with scouting and evaluations of players in the Angels’ system, amateurs, and players in other organizations.