From Richard Durrett of ESPN Dallas comes word that the Rangers are skipping Matt Harrison’s scheduled Tuesday start against the Rays in an effort to limit the 25-year-old’s rising innings total. Scott Feldman, a reliever, will take the mound instead.
Harrison threw just 85 2/3 innings last season between the minor and major leagues. This year, he’s already up to 153 total frames.
The young and talented left-hander spoke about the decision with reporters on Saturday afternoon:
“You’re not happy with having to skip a start, especially near the end of the season. But they think that’s what is best for me. I’ll stay active in the bullpen. I understand it. They were honest with me, so I can’t complain.”
Harrison has an impressive 3.59 ERA, 1.31 WHIP and 103/49 K/BB ratio through 25 starts this year.
The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.
Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.
Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.