Scott Podsednik, who signed a minor-league contract with the Blue Jays last week after previously turning down $2 million from the Dodgers, is wearing a walking boot because of plantar fasciitis.
John Lott of the National Post reports that Podsednik is due to be examined by doctors when he arrives at Blue Jays camp tomorrow and there’s currently “no timetable” for his readiness for game action. According to Lott, manager John Farrell indicated that the team didn’t know about the injury when they signed Podsednik, which is surprising given that it was just last week and so much of his value stems from speed.
Podsednik is slated to compete for a bench spot in Toronto, but could also be an option as the Blue Jays’ left fielder and leadoff man depending on how the rest of the lineup shakes out. He can earn $1 million by making the team, so Podsednik’s decision to decline his half of a mutual option with the Dodgers back in November will cost him at least $1 million even if he gets healthy and wins a job. And with an injury that tends to linger, that’s far from a guarantee.
The Mets told Jay Bruce that the club plans on having him open the season as the everyday right fielder, Ken Davidoff of the New York Post reports. This comes as no surprise after the Mets failed to get any bites after dangling Bruce as a trade chip. The Mets reportedly wanted a pair of prospects in exchange for Bruce.
With Bruce in right, Yoenis Cespedes back in left, and Curtis Granderson in center, Michael Conforto appears to be the odd man out. He’ll either warm the bench or head back to Triple-A Las Vegas for regular at-bats.
Bruce, who turns 30 years old in April, had a rough final two months of the 2016 season after joining the Mets in a trade from the Reds. He hit a paltry .219/.294/.391 with eight home runs and 19 RBI in 187 plate appearances. Bruce, apparently, wanted to go anywhere but in New York.
Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times reports that the Angels have inked outfielder Eric Young, Jr. to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.
Young, 31, played in just six games and logged one plate appearance in the majors this past season with the Yankees. He last played regularly in 2014. While Young doesn’t do much with the bat, he could provide value as a pinch-runner. He also offers versatility, having played all three outfield positions along with second base.
The Angels have Ben Revere as their fourth outfielder and Jefry Marte behind him, so Young would need to have a very impressive showing in spring training to find a spot on the Angels’ roster.