Casey Blake has been trying to talk the Dodgers into activating him from the disabled list once he becomes eligible to return Thursday, according to Ken Gurnick of MLB.com.
Initially the plan was for Blake to rejoin the lineup Saturday or Sunday, but he told Gurnick that he already feels “good enough to compete” and manager Don Mattingly admitted that the Dodgers “are thinking about it.”
Gurnick notes that Blake had been getting plenty of work in extended spring training, taking up to eight or nine at-bats per day in minor-league games. However, now that the actual minor-league season has started he’d have to go elsewhere for game action.
The Braves have signed reliever Blaine Boyer to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training, MLB.com’s Mark Bowman reports. Bowman adds that the right-hander has a “good chance” to make the Braves’ bullpen out of spring training.
Boyer, 35, spent the past season with the Brewers, finishing with a 3.95 ERA and a 26/17 K/BB ratio in 66 innings.
Boyer, of course, started his professional baseball career with the Braves as they selected him in the third round of the 2000 draft. Since the Braves traded him in 2009, Boyer has pitched for the Cardinals, Diamondbacks, Mets, Padres, and Twins along with the Brewers.
Update (6:48 PM EST): Topkin reports the contract will be of the major league variety.
Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays and free agent reliever Shawn Tolleson are close to finalizing a contract.
Tolleson, who turns 29 years old on Thursday, had an ugly 2016 season, finishing with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He was one of the Rangers’ best relievers in the two seasons prior to that, however, which included saving 35 games in 2015.