John Lannan wants the Nationals to trade him and they’d be glad to if someone would take his $5 million salary off their hands, but instead he’s stuck in the minors and didn’t help his cause much yesterday in his first Triple-A start.
Lannan lasted just two innings against the Yankees’ affiliate, giving up five runs to a lineup that included No. 3 hitter Steve Pearce and cleanup man Jack Cust. He managed to strike out just one of the 14 batters he faced, allowing six hits and two walks.
If there’s truly almost zero market for Lannan right now the Nationals are probably better off keeping him as rotation insurance, as dumping him to save a few bucks or acquire a marginal prospect has limited value at this point and he could still come in handy if a starter goes down with an injury. Still, it’s remarkable how far he’s fallen after being the Opening Day starter in both 2009 and 2010 before throwing 185 innings with a 3.70 ERA last year.
Newsday’s Marc Carig reports that the Mets may move Asdrubal Cabrera to second base when he returns from the disabled list. Cabrera has been on the disabled list since June 13 with a sprained left thumb, but he’s expected to be activated on Friday.
Cabrera, 31, last played second base in 2014 with the Nationals. He has played shortstop exclusively as a Met the last two seasons. Jose Reyes would continue to play shortstop if the Mets were to go through with the position change. Cabrera would displace T.J. Rivera, who has been playing second base in place of the injured Neil Walker.
In 196 plate appearances this season, Cabrera is hitting .244/.321/.392 with six home runs and 20 RBI. He has made 11 defensive errors, which is tied for the third-most among shortstops behind Tim Anderson (16) and Dansby Swanson (12).
Brewers closer Corey Knebel set a modern major league record for relievers to start a season, as Thursday’s appearance marked his 38th consecutive appearance with a strikeout. He set down the side in order in the ninth inning, striking Josh Bell out to start the frame.
Aroldis Chapman held the record previously, recording a strikeout in his first 37 appearances of the season in 2014 with the Reds.
Knebel, 25, has flown under the radar despite having an incredibly good season. He moved into the closer’s role in mid-May when Neftali Feliz, now a free agent, struggled. After Thursday’s appearance, Knebel is 12-for-15 in save chances with a 0.96 ERA and a 65/17 K/BB ratio in 37 2/3 innings.