The Boston Globe reports that Red Sox reliever Bobby Jenks — who missed most of last season with back problems and had surgery to remove bone fragments in December — needed a second surgery to deal with fluid buildup around his spine. The recover time for that, the Globe reports, is eight weeks, which means he likely won’t be ready when spring training gets underway next month.
Jenks was able to manage only 19 appearances last season, striking out 17 and walking 13 in 15 and two-thirds with a 6.32 ERA. Good thing Boston got Mark Melancon and Andrew Bailey this winter.
Gonna go out on a limb and say that this signing will not be written about as the Sox’ best.
The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.
Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.
Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.