Lost in the hoopla surrounding Anthony Rizzo’s debut is that the Padres placed setup man Luke Gregerson on the disabled list last night with a strained oblique muscle.
Gregerson isn’t a household name, but he has a 3.14 ERA and 196 strikeouts in 181 innings since debuting in 2009, including a 2.63 ERA in 30 appearances this season.
San Diego certainly has the bullpen depth to withstand losing Gregerson, as Heath Bell, Chad Qualls, Ernesto Frieri, Mike Adams, Pat Neshek, and Cory Luebke all have ERAs under 3.50 (thanks largely to Petco Park, but still).
Gregerson is hoping to return when eligible to come off the DL, but oblique injuries tend to linger.
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.
The Phillies announced on Tuesday that the club traded pitcher Alec Asher to the Orioles for a player to be named later.
Asher, 25, was the victim of a roster crunch. He was not going to make the 25-man roster and the starting rotation at Triple-A Lehigh Valley was already full. The Phillies acquired him from the Rangers in the July 2015 Cole Hamels trade.
Asher had good results in 27 2/3 innings in the big leagues last year, posting a 2.28 ERA with a 13/4 K/BB ratio. While it didn’t show in those stats, the right-hander sometimes struggles with command and he doesn’t miss bats often enough to make up for it. The Orioles, however, are happy to add some pitching depth.