Sure, his performance is going to make it difficult for Pat Burrell to get any more major league work, but underlying that performance is that chronic foot injury from which he’s been suffering all summer. I wasn’t really clear on the nature of it until I read Hank Schulman’s piece in the Chronicle this morning:
Burrell signed for $1 million this year and could do so again. On the other hand, he might have to retire because of a rare and debilitating foot injury that one doctor told him occurs mostly in car accidents. “I’m one of those guys, I’ll play until they tell me I can’t,” Burrell said. “I just enjoy it so much. That being said, I’ve got some limitations with this, and I don’t know if I’ll be allowed to play with this foot thing.”
He’s always been so hot-and-cold that I figured that the injury was just an annoyance and we were simply in a cold spell, maybe even a permanent one. Guess not.
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.