Chris Getz returned from the disabled list last night and the Royals will also activate Jonathan Sanchez to make tonight’s start versus the Brewers.
Sanchez has been out since May 9 with biceps tendonitis and had a 6.75 ERA in six starts before being shut down. He also gave up 10 runs in 13 innings during a minor-league rehab assignment, so Brewers hitters should be licking their chops.
Getz reclaimed the starting second base job, which sent prospect Johnny Giavotella back to Triple-A after getting sporadic playing time from manager Ned Yost. Giavotella has yet to produce in 67 games as a big leaguer, although his .613 OPS is nearly identical to Getz’s career mark of .629.
Presumably at some point the Royals will simply give Giavotella an extended opportunity to show that his .336 batting average in 141 games at Triple-A makes him a long-term building block, but he’ll be 25 years old in a month and it hasn’t happened yet.
Oft-injured pitcher Josh Johnson is retiring from baseball, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick is reporting.
Johnson, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2013. The right-hander underwent his third Tommy John surgery in September 2015 but wasn’t able to bounce back.
Johnson spent most of his career with the Marlins, but also pitched for the Blue Jays in the big leagues, as well as the Padres in the minors. He retires with a career 3.40 ERA, 915 strikeouts across 998 innings in the majors, and two All-Star nominations. Johnson led the National League with a 2.30 ERA in 2010, finishing fifth in NL Cy Young Award balloting. One wonders what he could have accomplished if he was able to stay healthy.
The Angels are nearing a multi-year deal with free agent third baseman Luis Valbuena, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. It’s believed to be a two-year contract with a third-year option.
Valbuena, 31, hit .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances in 2016. He missed most of the second half with a hamstring injury, for which he underwent surgery in late August.
Valbuena has played a majority of his career at third base, but also has extensive experience at second base and has racked up innings at first base and shortstop as well. He won’t play every day for the Angels, as Yunel Escobar lays claim to third base and C.J. Cron first base, but he will give them flexibility and a left-handed bat off the bench.