After spending last season in the minors veteran outfielder Ryan Spilborghs is headed to Japan.
Troy Renck of the Denver Post reports that Spilborghs has signed with the Seibu Lions, agreeing to a one-year deal.
Spilborghs played six seasons for the Rockies as a part-timer, hitting .272 with a .768 OPS while calling hitter-friendly Coors Field home. He was struck at Triple-A all year, playing for the Indians’ and Rangers’ affiliates while hitting .288 with nine homers and a .774 OPS.
At age 33 he was likely looking at minor-league offers again for 2013, so Spilborghs chose more money and more playing time in Japan.
Phillies third baseman Will Middlebrooks suffered a serious injury during Saturday’s Grapefruit League contest against the Orioles. The infielder was chasing down a pop fly in the eighth inning when he ran into left fielder Andrew Pullin, who inadvertently trapped Middlebrooks’ ankle under his leg. Middlebrooks was unable to put weight on his leg following the collision and was carted off the field and taken to a local hospital for X-rays.
Per MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki, not much is known yet about the severity of the ankle injury or the recovery time it will require, though it appears serious enough to set Middlebrooks back considerably as he seeks a backup/bench role with the team this spring.
The 29-year-old is currently seeking another opportunity to extend his six-year major-league career in 2018. He’s coming off of two down years with the Brewers and Rangers, during which he slashed a cumulative .169/.229/.262 with four extra bases through 70 plate appearances.