Called up from Triple-A Sunday for the first time this year, the Twins’ most expensive middle infielder, Tsuyoshi Nishioka, made his season debut Monday. And the only nice thing that can be said about it is that the Twins beat the Indians 14-3 anyway.
While his teammates were racking up four homers, 14 hits and five walks, Nishioka went 0-for-5 and committed two errors at second base.
Nishioka was hitting just .245/.309/.301 before being summoned from Rochester, so very little is expected at this point. He had one homer in 311 at-bats, and he was caught stealing in six of his 12 attempts.
With the 0-for-5 today, Nishioka is hitting .221/.273/.243 with no homers in 226 at-bats as a major leaguer, with metrics that suggest he might be even worse defensive than offensively. The Twins still owe him another $3.25 million after this season, but it’d be a surprise if he’s still in the organization next spring. A return to Japan might be for the best.
Jerry Crasnick of ESPN reports that the Indians have expressed interest in Asdrubal Cabrera.
Cabrera, who began his career in Cleveland, would be a utility guy. Which is not exactly the Indians’ greatest need — they need a starting pitcher above all else — but improvement is improvement. Not much improvement in Cabrera’s case as he’s hitting .250/.333/.398 with nine homers in 70 games this season, but that’s useful if he’s cool with a strictly utility role. Which he’d have to be given that the Indians are solid at second, third and short.
Cabrera would come pretty cheaply of course. Partially because he’s not major piece, partially because he sort of hilariously demanded a trade last month. In large part because he wants to play shortstop which, now that I think about it, may complicate this whole “Cabrera for a utility role” idea the Indians seem to have.
Jeff Passan of Yahoo reports that the Rangers “have started reaching out to teams potentially interested in acquiring” Yu Darvish.
Texas is only 4.5 games out of the second Wild Card slot, but there are five teams ahead of them and they’ve really never had any traction this year. Such is not the stuff on which a team bases an all-in playoff run. Darvish, meanwhile, is in his walk year, so the Rangers have some incentive to get value for him. Passan says the Astros, Brewers, Yankees, Indians, Rockies and Dodgers could have interest in him, but really, he’d improve any contender.
Darvish is 6-8 with a 3.45 ERA and 131 strikeouts and 42 walks in 125.1 innings.