UPDATE, 7:41 PM: According to Mychael Urban of CSN Bay Area, this one is done. If Suppan manages to find a spot on the Giants’ Opening Day roster, he will earn a $1 million salary.
2:16 PM: From Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News comes word that the Giants are nearing agreement on a minor league contract with veteran right-hander Jeff Suppan.
The deal will also come with an invitation to spring training, where Suppan will attempt to land a spot in the Giants’ bullpen as a long reliever. If that doesn’t work out, he’ll probably begin the year at Triple-A Fresno and serve as rotation depth.
Suppan, 36, posted a 5.06 ERA and 1.65 WHIP across 101.1 innings for the Brewers and Cardinals last season, fanning only 51 batters while walking 37. It was the final chapter of a ridiculous four-year, $42 million contract that he signed with Milwaukee in December of 2006.
His fastball velocity is poor and he shouldn’t be trusted as a regular member of any starting rotation, but Suppan is capable of eating some innings for San Francisco in the event of an emergency.
Yesterday Mike Trout left the Marlins-Angels game after hurting his thumb while sliding head first into second base. After the game the Angels talked about it as if it were just a sprain. Trout had an MRI today, however, and the diagnosis is far worse: he has a torn thumb ligament.
While a treatment option has not yet been chosen, surgery is a possibility. A certainty is that he’ll miss, at the very least, several weeks of play. He has been placed on the disabled list for the first time in his career.
Trout, the reigning AL MVP and, without question, the best player in baseball, is batting .337/.461/.742 with 16 home runs, 36 RBI, 36 runs scored, and 10 stolen bases in 206 plate appearances this season. Even with the one of the weaker supporting casts in baseball, Trout had the Angels near .500 and in at least arguable contention in the AL West.
Without him, they are likely sunk. Without him, baseball is worse off.
SAN FRANCISCO — Nationals slugger Bryce Harper and San Francisco reliever Hunter Strickland both landed punches to the head during a wild brawl that erupted Monday after a hit by pitch.
Harper was hit in the right hip by Strickland’s 98 mph fastball in the eighth inning with Washington ahead 2-0.
Harper pointed the bat toward Strickland, charged the mound and fired his batting helmet wide of the pitcher. They started to swing away and they each connected as the benches and bullpens emptied.
At least two Giants players forcefully dragged Strickland from the middle of the brawl all the way into the dugout. Harper and Strickland were both ejected.
In the 2014 NL Division Series, Harper hit two home runs off Strickland. After the star’s second shot, in Game 4, he stared at Strickland as he rounded the bases.