Ubaldo Jimenez had hoped to avoid the disabled list after a cut in his right thumb cuticle caused problems gripping the ball in his Opening Day start, but today the Rockies put him on the shelf and called up Greg Reynolds to take his spot in the rotation.
Reynolds, who lost the fifth starter competition to Esmil Rogers during spring training, will pitch Saturday against the Pirates. Jimenez is eligible to return from the DL as soon as April 17, so he may end up missing only two starts.
Reynolds was the No. 2 overall pick in the 2006 draft, going one spot ahead of Evan Longoria while Tim Lincecum, Clayton Kershaw, and Brandon Morrow also went in the top 10. He debuted with the Rockies in 2008, but went 2-8 with an 8.13 ERA in 62 innings, missed most of 2009 with a shoulder injury that required surgery, and struggled in the minors last season.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Royals and first baseman Eric Hosmer have discussed a long-term contract extension. However, Hosmer also indicated that he will head into free agency if a deal is not consummated by Opening Day.
Hosmer, 27, avoided arbitration with the Royals last month, agreeing to a $12.25 million salary for the 2017 season. He is one of four key Royals players who can become a free agent after the season along with Mike Moustakas, Alcides Escobar, and Lorenzo Cain. If Hosmer does reach free agency, he would arguably be the top free agent first baseman.
Hosmer finished the past season hitting .266/.328/.433 with 25 home runs and 104 RBI while making his first All-Star team.
Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that the Yankees have signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, pending a physical. Assuming the deal is finalized, Sherman notes that the Yankees will have Niese work as both a starter and a reliever in big league camp this spring.
According to Sherman, the Yankees were interested in lefty relievers Jerry Blevins and Boone Logan, but didn’t want to commit at their asking prices. They are looking for a lefty set-up man along with Tommy Lane.
Niese, 30, pitched for the Pirates and Mets last season, finishing with a 5.50 ERA and an 88/47 K/BB ratio over 121 innings.