While keeping in mind that the statements of prosecutors in high-profile criminal cases mere days after the event are often calculated to influence the potential jury pool and make the suspect seem as guilty as hell, this looks kinda bad for Alfredo Simon:
A Dominican prosecutor handling the case of Orioles reliever Alfredo Simon said Wednesday the “trigger-happy” pitcher might have changed the barrel of a gun he turned over to authorities as a way of disguising his involvement in a fatal New Year’s Dayshooting.
He says that the serial number on the weapon’s barrel does not match numbers on the rest of the gun, which suggests that Simon swapped the original barrel for another in between the shooting and the time the gun (and Simon) was taken into custody. Which, if true, means that those ballistics tests everyone was waiting on may mean nothing now.
I don’t think Simon is going anywhere anytime soon.
Free agent first baseman Edwin Espinal has signed a minor league deal with the Tigers, the infielder announced Saturday. The move has yet to be confirmed by the team.
Espinal, 23, capped a seven-year run with the Pirates’ minor league affiliates in 2017. He split his season between Double-A Altoona and Triple-A Indianapolis, batting a cumulative .294/.327/.447 with 15 home runs and 31 doubles in 532 plate appearances. While he’s raked at nearly every level so far, he also profiles well on defense, and rounded off his 2017 performance with a perfect fielding percentage, 208 putouts and a Gold Glove award.
Espinal is untested at the major league level and it’s not yet clear if he’ll make the jump in 2018. He showed some positional versatility during his time in the minors, however, and could take reps at third base or DH if necessary. The Tigers are reportedly on the lookout for pitching depth and left-handed bats — two bills the right-handed Espinal doesn’t fit — and presumably have a lot of moves left to make this winter.