Throughout the first half the Mariners talked about potentially finding ways to limit rookie Michael Pineda’s workload and it sounds like they’ve decided to go with extra rest between starts.
Pineda, who’s currently on pace to throw around 195 innings, will have nine days off before making his next start and manager Eric Wedge told Greg Johns of MLB.com that the Mariners “will pick spots” to give him similar extra rest down the stretch with “a day here, two days there, that type of deal where we can spread it out a little more.”
Pineda has been fantastic with a 3.53 ERA, .205 opponents’ batting average, and 133/43 K/BB ratio in 21 starts, but the 22-year-old right-hander has never thrown even 140 innings in a season before and Seattle won’t be playing for much besides draft position in September. Wedge declined to “go public with” a specific innings limit, but the plan he describes would probably leave Pineda throwing around 175 innings.
The Orioles have re-signed infielder Pedro Alvarez to a minor league deal, per a report from Roch Kubatko of MASN Sports. The deal guarantees Alvarez $1 million if he makes the 40-man roster and another $2 million in potential performance bonuses. The team has yet to confirm the deal.
This will be Alvarez’s third year with the Orioles. After posting decent numbers in 2016, the 31-year-old was relegated to the minors for the majority of the 2017 season and saw only 14 games at the big league level. He finished the year with an underwhelming .239/.294/.442 batting line and 26 home runs through 595 plate appearances for Triple-A Norfolk.
Alvarez is expected to split his time between first base and DH this spring, and MLB.com’s Brittany Ghiroli notes that he’s unlikely to experiment with another outfield role. While he isn’t too far removed from his last productive season in the majors, the veteran infielder will function purely as insurance for first baseman Chris Davis and designated hitter Mark Trumbo and will likely begin the season in the minors.