Grady Sizemore, who spent part of May on the disabled list with a right knee contusion, re-injured the same knee yesterday and has been placed back on the DL.
The good news is that it was Sizemore’s left knee that caused him to miss most of last season and the beginning of this year following microfracture surgery, and the Indians are calling his current right knee injury merely a bruise. However, he left the team and traveled back to Cleveland to undergo further tests.
Sizemore has played pretty well in between the injuries, posting a .769 OPS that ranks 10th among all MLB center fielders with at least 50 games, but his .237 batting average and ugly 75/17 K/BB ratio are worrisome and at some point all the knee problems may put in question his ability to remain in center field defensively.
Michael Brantley filled in for Sizemore last time and will do so again now, sliding from left field to center field, but with right fielder Shin-Soo Choo also on the DL with a broken thumb the Indians may be forced to make regulars out of Ezequiel Carrera and Travis Buck or Austin Kearns.
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.
The big presidential pardon news today concerns the commutation of Chelsea Manning’s sentence. We’ll leave that aside. For our purposes, know that someone in the world of baseball was pardoned: Willie McCovey.
Yes, Hall of Famer Willie McCovey, who in 1995 pleaded guilty to income tax fraud related to the non-reporting of income received from memorabilia and autograph shows. Duke Snider pleaded guilty alongside McCovey. They were given two years probation and fines of $5,000. Snider died in 2011. McCovey still works with the San Francisco Giants as a senior advisor and goodwill ambassador.
President Obama’s release of McCovey’s pardon was pretty succinct. But it’s enough to scrub the record of one of the greatest sluggers of all time.