In what should come as a surprise to no one, the Giants weren’t able to trade Aaron Rowand or Miguel Tejada after designating both for assignment. The pair were placed on release waivers Thursday, the San Francisco Chronicle’s Henry Schulman reports.
Both players figure to become free agents Monday, allowing them to sign with teams. There may not be any demand for Tejada at all, but Rowand is sure to get several calls. That’s partly because Rowand will merely have to be paid the minimum next year, with the Giants on the hook for the remaining $11.6 million of his $12 million salary.
There’s already been some speculation that the Phillies will bring Rowand back. They could use a true backup center fielder, and Rowand has warm memories from his time in Philly. However, Rowand might be able to find a bigger role. The Phillies already have a fine fourth outfielder for this year and next in John Mayberry Jr., and Rowand would really only be useful to the team when Shane Victorino is hurt.
Of course, neither player will be eligible for the postseason this season. The Giants saw to that when they waited as long as they did to cut bait.
During the offseason, the Astros finally got rid of Tal’s Hill in center field. It was a throwback to older stadiums, some of which had uneven topography — Crosley Field, namely. As unique as it was in the age of cookie cutter sports stadiums, most of us were holding our collective breaths hoping no one ruptured an Achilles or suffered another brutal injury trying to navigate the hill while attempting to catch a fly ball.
We saw what it looked like during reconstruction:
And now, via Julia Morales of ROOT Sports, we see what it looks like after all the work has been done:
The Astros are allowing fans with Lexus Field Club tickets to stand on the new warning track to watch batting practice and shag fly balls as well, Morales notes. Lexus Field Club is where Tal’s Hill used to be.
Good riddance, Tal’s Hill.
Jhoulys Chacin will start on Opening Day, April 3 against the Dodgers in Los Angeles, Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. It will be Chacin’s second Opening Day start, the other coming in 2013 with the Rockies against the Brewers. He’ll be the fifth different Padres pitcher in as many years to start on Opening Day.
Chacin, 29, inked a one-year, $1.75 million contract with the Padres in December. The right-hander spent the 2016 season with the Braves and Angels, compiling an aggregate 4.81 ERA with a 119/55 K/BB ratio in 144 innings.
Lin notes that Chacin will be followed in the rotation by Clayton Richard and Jered Weaver. It will be an interesting rotation, to say the least, as it will arguably be the worst in baseball.