Michael Brantley landed on the 15-day disabled list last week with inflammation in his right wrist. It seemed like a fairly minor situation at the time, but only because we didn’t have all the information.
According to the Indians’ official Twitter feed, Brantley was transferred to the 60-day disabled list on Sunday morning following further tests on his ailing right arm, like a CT scan and bone scan. The Indians’ medical staff still doesn’t have an exact diagnosis, but they’ve ended the young outfielder’s 2011 season because of the risk of re-injury.
Brantley, 24, turned in a .266/.318/.384 batting line, seven home runs, 46 RBI and 13 stolen bases in 114 games this year. He should be fine by the beginning of spring training next February and is likely to open the 2012 season as Cleveland’s primary left fielder.
The Indians called up Jerad Head to provide outfield depth down the stretch. A 28-year-old from Kansas, he was hitting .284/.338/.526 with 24 homers and 70 RBI in 463 plate appearances at Triple-A Columbus.
UPDATE, 11:40am: The Indians have announced that Brantley will undergo surgery early next week to remove the hamate bone from his right hand. He is fully expected to be ready for spring training next season.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Royals and first baseman Eric Hosmer have discussed a long-term contract extension. However, Hosmer also indicated that he will head into free agency if a deal is not consummated by Opening Day.
Hosmer, 27, avoided arbitration with the Royals last month, agreeing to a $12.25 million salary for the 2017 season. He is one of four key Royals players who can become a free agent after the season along with Mike Moustakas, Alcides Escobar, and Lorenzo Cain. If Hosmer does reach free agency, he would arguably be the top free agent first baseman.
Hosmer finished the past season hitting .266/.328/.433 with 25 home runs and 104 RBI while making his first All-Star team.
Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that the Yankees have signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, pending a physical. Assuming the deal is finalized, Sherman notes that the Yankees will have Niese work as both a starter and a reliever in big league camp this spring.
According to Sherman, the Yankees were interested in lefty relievers Jerry Blevins and Boone Logan, but didn’t want to commit at their asking prices. They are looking for a lefty set-up man along with Tommy Lane.
Niese, 30, pitched for the Pirates and Mets last season, finishing with a 5.50 ERA and an 88/47 K/BB ratio over 121 innings.