Delmon Young is back from his seven-day suspension and to make room for his return to the roster the Tigers designated Brad Eldred for assignment.
Eldred was called up last week after absolutely destroying Triple-A pitching and manager Jim Leyland talked about “running him out there” to see if he could provide some power, but he’s a 31-year-old journeyman with a sub par track record in the majors and obviously the Tigers weren’t exactly committed to giving him an extended look.
Leyland has already said that Young won’t immediately rejoin the starting lineup because he hasn’t been with the team in a week and the manager first wants him to get some practice reps. And of course Young was also hitting just .242 with a .644 OPS in 18 games before being arrested in New York last Thursday night/Friday morning on assault and hate crime charges.
Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times reports that the Angels have inked outfielder Eric Young, Jr. to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.
Young, 31, played in just six games and logged one plate appearance in the majors this past season with the Yankees. He last played regularly in 2014. While Young doesn’t do much with the bat, he could provide value as a pinch-runner. He also offers versatility, having played all three outfield positions along with second base.
The Angels have Ben Revere as their fourth outfielder and Jefry Marte behind him, so Young would need to have a very impressive showing in spring training to find a spot on the Angels’ roster.
Update (5:20 PM EST): It’s a minor league contract, per Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. If he makes the major league roster, Saltalamacchia will earn $1.25 million with an additional $250,000 available through incentives.
The Blue Jays are close to a deal with free agent catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Shi Davidi of Sportsnet is reporting.
Saltalamacchia, 31, hit a meager .171/.284/.346 with 12 home runs and 38 RBI in 292 plate appearances with the Tigers this past season. With Russell Martin getting regular playing time behind the plate, Saltalamacchia will serve as his understudy, pushing A.J. Jimenez and Juan Graterol down on the depth chart.
The veteran catcher isn’t far removed from being a productive backstop. He had an .805 OPS in 70 games with the Diamondbacks in 2015 and also helped the Red Sox win the World Series in 2013 with an .804 OPS in 121 games.