Miguel Olivo’s groin injury opens up a roster spot and the timing works for the Mariners to fill it by activating Mike Carp from the disabled list.
Carp began the season as Seattle’s starting left fielder, but lasted just one game before suffering a shoulder injury and has been on the DL since.
He figures to see most of his action at designated hitter, with Jesus Montero now needed regularly behind the plate in a job-split with John Jaso.
If his shoulder is healthy Carp can provide a nice boost to the always needy Mariners lineup, as he hit .276 with 12 homers and a .791 OPS in 79 games for Seattle last season and has consistently posted strong numbers at Triple-A. However, his .137 batting average while rehabbing in the minors suggests he might not be totally healed.
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.