Danny Knobler, who covered the Tigers in Detroit prior to working at CBSSports.com, reports that Ramon Santiago “could be a possibility” for the Phillies as they look to add depth following the latest news on Chase Utley’s knee injury.
Santiago has split time at shortstop for the Tigers during the past few seasons, but is slated to be a backup this year after the team re-signed midseason pickup Jhonny Peralta to a two-year, $11.25 million deal.
Santiago has logged more than 3,000 career innings at shortstop and another 950 innings at second base, but aside from a flukey .870 OPS in a part-time role a few years ago the 31-year-old switch-hitter hasn’t offered much production offensively. Of course, even his measly .681 OPS during the past two seasons is better than the .665 OPS posted by Wilson Valdez, who’s the most likely in-house option to replace Utley.
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.