Tommy Hunter and the Orioles have agreed to a one-year deal to avoid arbitration, according to Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun.
Hunter was terrible last season, throwing 134 innings with a 5.45 ERA and being demoted to the minors, but he still gets a raise from $500,000 to $1.82 million thanks to being arbitration eligible for the first time at age 25.
Hunter parlayed some good luck and even better run support into a 13-4 record and 3.68 ERA for the Rangers in 2010, but since then he’s posted a 5.15 ERA in 218 innings while serving up 44 homers.
Jake Arrieta‘s bat is in midseason form already. The Cubs’ ace swatted a solo home run to center field off of Zack Greinke in Thursday afternoon’s Grapefruit League exhibition game, his first homer of the spring.
The blast went 465 feet, according to MLB.com’s Daren Willman.
Arrieta has hit two home runs in each of the past two seasons. Madison Bumgarner (eight) and Noah Syndergaard (four) are the only other pitchers to match or exceed his output in that department.
Greinke, meanwhile, is hoping to bounce back after a miserable 2016 season. He finished with an uncharacteristic 4.37 ERA in 26 starts in his first year with the Diamondbacks.
Angels first baseman Luis Valbuena will miss the next four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.
Valbuena, 31, signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Angels in January and was on track to get the lion’s share of the playing time at first base. While he’s out, however, C.J. Cron will handle first base on a regular basis. When Valbeuna returns, the two will likely form a platoon.
Last year with the Astros, Valbuena hit a solid .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances.