Liam Hendriks was supposed to sub for the injured Scott Baker as the No. 3 starter in the Twins’ rotation, but he was scratched from his scheduled Sunday start and hospitalized with food poisoning.
Anthony Swarzak did a nice job filling in for the guy who was supposed to be filling in, but Hendriks’ availability for this week is now in question because as manager Ron Gardenhire put it: “I don’t think it would be a good idea for him to get on an airplane.”
Minnesota had hoped Baker would miss just one start, in which case Hendriks would likely be headed back to Triple-A, but now Baker is expected to be out for a significant chunk of time and if the 23-year-old prospect can shake the food poisoning he should have ample opportunity to show he belongs in the majors.
The Braves have signed reliever Blaine Boyer to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training, MLB.com’s Mark Bowman reports. Bowman adds that the right-hander has a “good chance” to make the Braves’ bullpen out of spring training.
Boyer, 35, spent the past season with the Brewers, finishing with a 3.95 ERA and a 26/17 K/BB ratio in 66 innings.
Boyer, of course, started his professional baseball career with the Braves as they selected him in the third round of the 2000 draft. Since the Braves traded him in 2009, Boyer has pitched for the Cardinals, Diamondbacks, Mets, Padres, and Twins along with the Brewers.
Update (6:48 PM EST): Topkin reports the contract will be of the major league variety.
Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays and free agent reliever Shawn Tolleson are close to finalizing a contract.
Tolleson, who turns 29 years old on Thursday, had an ugly 2016 season, finishing with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He was one of the Rangers’ best relievers in the two seasons prior to that, however, which included saving 35 games in 2015.