As part of their ongoing effort to stockpile cheap pitching depth the Mets have re-signed 40-year-old right-hander Miguel Batista to a minor-league contract.
Batista was called upon to make a spot start in the Mets’ season finale and shockingly threw a complete-game shutout against the Reds to lower his ERA to 3.60, but his overall performance wasn’t anywhere near as impressive and included more walks (33) than strikeouts (31) in 60 innings.
He doesn’t miss many bats or consistently throw strikes, but Batista is somewhat handy to have around because he’s willing to fill any role on the pitching staff. He’ll compete for a spot in spring training and could be a temporary rotation fill in if Johan Santana isn’t ready to begin the season on the active roster.
On Wednesday, the Brewers placed first baseman Eric Thames on the 10-day disabled list with a torn UCL in his left thumb. In a corresponding roster move, the Brewers recalled pitcher Brandon Woodruff from Triple-A Colorado Springs.
Thames, 31, exited Tuesday’s game against the Royals before the bottom of the ninth inning. After the game, manager Craig Counsell expressed concern about his thumb. As MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy reports, Brewers GM David Stearns says that surgery is likely but not definite, but that he expects Thames to be back for a “significant” portion of the 2018 season.
Thames was hitting quite well for the Brewers, owning a .250/.351/.625 triple-slash line along with seven home runs and 13 RBI in 74 plate appearances. Jesus Aguilar should handle first base while Thames is out. Ryan Braun could also see some action at first base.