On Tuesday Alfredo Aceves came back from his suspension and was used in a two-inning save attempt. Last night he was brought in for mop-up duty in the seventh inning of a blowout. Can you say “demotion?”
Apparently Bobby Valentine can’t say it. Or else he hasn’t told Aceves about it, because here’s what Aceves said when he was asked if he was no longer the Sox’ closer:
“I wish I can know”
And Valentine made vague postgame comments about maybe “stretching out” Aceves.
I’d go with Andrew Bailey over Aceves right now if I was running the ship, and it’s pretty obvious and understandable that Aceves will not be the closer for the Red Sox in the future. But it’s also kinda lame that Valentine seems to be jerking him around like this.
The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.
Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.
Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.