A’s demote struggling starter Tyson Ross to Triple-A

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Tyson Ross began the season with back-to-back Quality Starts, but he’s gone just 1-6 with a 7.34 ERA since then and yesterday’s ugly outing versus the last-place Twins was apparently the final straw, as the A’s demoted the 25-year-old right-hander to Triple-A.

No corresponding roster move has been announced yet, but Yoenis Cespedes and Brandon McCarthy are both on the verge of returning from the disabled list and McCarthy figures to fill the empty rotation spot.

Ross has good raw stuff with a 92-mph fastball and sharp slider, but the 2008 second-round pick has yet to figure out big-league hitters. Since debuting in 2010 he’s made 17 starts and 27 relief appearances, throwing 122 total innings with a 4.86 ERA and 79/54 K/BB ratio. He’ll be back in Oakland soon enough, but Ross might be destined for the bullpen long term.

Indians sign Melvin Upton Jr. to a minor league deal

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The Cleveland Indians have agreed to a minor league deal with outfielder Melvin Upton, Jr.

Upton, 33, battled a torn thumb ligament and a shoulder issue last season, limiting him to only 12 games with Triple-A Sacramento, the Giants’ affiliate. In those 12 games, he hit .244 with one double and one home run. Upton last played in the majors in 2016 with the Padres and Blue Jays with which he posted an aggregate .693 OPS.

Given the injuries suffered by Indians outfielders in the past couple of seasons it can’t hurt to have some options for organizational depth. If he has anything left in the tank, stash him on the bench or down in Columbus. If not, no harm done.