Brewers release veteran right-hander Kelvim Escobar

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Kelvim Escobar was diagnosed five days ago with a nerve impingement just above his right (pitching) hand. In related news, his big comeback attempt with the Milwaukee Brewers has been squashed.

According to Brewers senior director of media relations Mike Vassallo, the 36-year-old right-hander was given his unconditional release this morning in Brewers camp, presumably because the nerve impingement hasn’t shown any sign of improvement.

Escobar made only one appearance in the Cactus League for the Brewers, yielding one earned run on two walks and a hit-by-pitch over just two-thirds of an inning. He signed a minor league contract with Milwaukee in mid-January after a good showing in the Venezuelan Winter League.

The 36-year-old has pitched in one major league game since the end of the 2007 season.

Astros’ Jonathan Singleton, Dean Deetz suspended for failing drug tests

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MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart reports that Astros first baseman Jonathan Singleton has been suspended 100 games after testing positive for a drug of abuse for a third time. Minor league pitcher Dean Deetz has been suspended 80 games after testing positive for Dehydroclormethyltestosterone.

Singleton, 26, has had issues with marijuana in the past and opened up about his addiction several years ago. He said, “At this point it’s pretty evident to me that I’m a drug addict. I don’t openly tell everyone that, but it’s pretty apparent to myself.” He added, “I know that I enjoy smoking weed, I enjoy being high and I can’t block that out of my mind that I enjoy that. So I have to work against that.”

Singleton hasn’t played in the majors since 2015. Last season, after going all the way back to Double-A Corpus Christi, he hit .205/.376/.397 with 18 home runs and 62 RBI in 500 plate appearances.

Deetz, 24, was selected by the Astros in the 11th round of the 2014 draft. Between Corpus Christi and Triple-A Fresno last season, the right-hander posted a 4.25 ERA with a 97/50 K/BB ratio in 84 2/3 innings of work. He denies knowingly using a PED, per ESPN’s Keith Law.