It’s been over a year since he last wore a major league baseball uniform so we’re probably at the point where a story about Elijah Dukes getting arrested is less about a ballplayer in trouble with the law than it is about a criminal who happened to once play ball. Still, for old times sake:
Troubled former Tampa Bay Rays player Elijah Dukes has been charged in Florida with driving with a suspended or revoked driver’s license. Officials say the 26-year-old Dukes was arrested Sunday afternoon on an exit ramp of Interstate 75 near Tampa. Hillsborough County Jail records show he was released Sunday on a $250 bond.
Suspended license? It’s like he’s not even trying anymore. Dukes’ crimes used to be so much more ugly and require so much more criminal intent than this. A suspended license is just plain laziness. He’s become a shell of his former self.
If Dukes wants to be relevant in his chosen field again, he’s really going to have to raise the stakes. Elijah: have you considered light treason?
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.