According to Greg Johns of MLB.com, the funeral service for Greg Halman will be held Tuesday in the Netherlands. The family is also having a public viewing Sunday in the Kinheim gym in Haarlem, where Halman played baseball growing up.
The Mariners plan to send vice president of international operations Bob Engle, coordinator of European scouting Wayne Norton and and Peter Van Dalen, an associate scout in the Netherlands.
Halman, who played in 44 games with the Mariners over the past two seasons, died Monday morning when he was stabbed at an apartment in the Dutch port city of Rotterdam. According to the Associated Press, a judge has ordered Greg’s 22-year-old brother Jason to be detained for two more weeks on suspicion of murder or manslaughter. Police believe the incident may have followed an argument over loud music. Just tragic.
Free agent first baseman Edwin Espinal has signed a minor league deal with the Tigers, the infielder announced Saturday. The move has yet to be confirmed by the team.
Espinal, 23, capped a seven-year run with the Pirates’ minor league affiliates in 2017. He split his season between Double-A Altoona and Triple-A Indianapolis, batting a cumulative .294/.327/.447 with 15 home runs and 31 doubles in 532 plate appearances. While he’s raked at nearly every level so far, he also profiles well on defense, and rounded off his 2017 performance with a perfect fielding percentage, 208 putouts and a Gold Glove award.
Espinal is untested at the major league level and it’s not yet clear if he’ll make the jump in 2018. He showed some positional versatility during his time in the minors, however, and could take reps at third base or DH if necessary. The Tigers are reportedly on the lookout for pitching depth and left-handed bats — two bills the right-handed Espinal doesn’t fit — and presumably have a lot of moves left to make this winter.