Indians bench coach resigns due to Parkinson’s disease

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Tim Tolman, who spent the last two years as Cleveland’s bench coach under Manny Acta, announced Wednesday that he was stepping down from his role amid a battle with Parkinson’s disease.

Tolman, previously on Acta’s staff with the Nationals, was diagnosed two years ago. He plans to remain with the Indians in a role that will allow him a more flexible schedule.

The Indians announced that Sandy Alomar Jr. would be promoted from first-base coach to bench coach as Tolman’s replacement.  Alomar, though, is believed to be a candidate to replace Ozzie Guillen as White Sox manager.

Update: Interestingly enough, Acta just got ejected from Wednesday’s finale in the first inning. That will give Tolman a chance to manage in his last game in the Indians dugout.

Brandon McCarthy wins final spot in Dodgers’ rotation

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We learned on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu won one of the final two spots in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Brandon McCarthy has won the other, Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register reports. Alex Wood was McCarthy’s competitor for the spot.

McCarthy, 33, posted a 4.85 ERA across four appearances spanning 13 innings this spring, yielding seven earned runs on 14 hits and a walk with seven strikeouts. Wood, a southpaw, gave up five earned runs in six innings against the Reds on Tuesday, which might have factored into the decision.

Last season, McCarthy made nine starts and one relief appearance, posting a 4.95 ERA with a 44/26 K/BB ratio in 40 innings. In the event McCarthy falters, the club has Wood as well as Julio Urias and the injured Scott Kazmir as potential replacements.

Yankees re-sign Jon Niese to a minor league deal

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The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.

Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.

Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.