Outfielder Donavan Tate, the Padres’ 2009 first-round pick taken third overall, did not show up at Minor League camp. Via the San Diego Union-Tribune:
Tate, the outfielder signed by the Padres for $6.5 million as the No. 3 overall pick of 2009, informed the club that he will not be reporting on time with the rest of the minor league position players on Friday. Tate’s reason for not showing in Peoria was described by the club as “personal.”
Tate hit just .226 overall between Single-A Fort Wayne and Lake Elsinore, stealing 21 bases but with a disappointing 60 percent success rate. His career has been besieged by injuries and suspensions — most memorably, he was suspended in June 2011 for his second positive test for a drug of abuse (i.e. not performance-enhancers).
22 years old without even a taste of Double-A, and now a no-show at Padres camp, Tate’s career takes an even more disappointing turn. Padres VP Randy Smith suggested that Tate needs to work on being a better person before he can become a better ballplayer.
The two players taken ahead of Tate in the 2009 draft, Stephen Strasburg and Dustin Ackley, have enjoyed at least a modicum of success at the Major League level.
The Giants have acquired All-Star infielder Eduardo Nunez from the Twins in exchange for minor league pitcher Adalberto Mejia, the club announced on Thursday night.
Nunez, 29, went 0-for-4 in Thursday night’s game against the Orioles. He’s hitting .296/.325/.439 with 12 home runs, 47 RBI, 49 runs scored, and a league-best 26 stolen bases in 391 plate appearances this season. Nunez has played mostly at shortstop this season, but has also logged significant time at third base and a handful of games at second base, so he’ll give the Giants some versatility.
Nunez will likely play a lot of third base for the Giants as Matt Duffy is still sidelined with a strained left Achilles. He’s earning $1.475 million this season and will enter his third and final year of arbitration eligibility heading into 2017.
Mejia, 23, was considered the Giants’ seventh-best prospect by MLB Pipeline. He earned a promotion to Triple-A Sacramento last month after posting a 1.94 ERA with Double-A Richmond. In seven starts with Sacramento, he has a 4.20 ERA with a 43/11 K/BB ratio in 40 2/3 innings.
With a roster spot open, the Twins called up infield prospect Jorge Polanco from Triple-A Rochester, per MLB.com’s Rhett Bollinger.
Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY reports that the Mariners have received “strong” trade interest for starter Taijuan Walker. The right-hander is currently on the mend from tendinitis in his right foot. He’ll throw a bullpen on Friday at Wrigley Field with scouts in attendance.
Walker, 23, has a 3.66 ERA with an 80/18 K/BB ratio in 86 innings this season. It’s his first bit of sustained success at the major league level. What’s arguably just as intriguing is the fact that Walker will be under team control through 2020.
The Mariners have been hovering around .500 for the last month and entered Thursday six games behind the first-place Rangers in the AL West and 4.5 games out of the second AL Wild Card slot, behind three other teams as well as the two Wild Card leaders. It’s enough uncertainty which could push the Mariners to sell.