As first reported by MLB.com beat writer Ken Gurnick, the Dodgers have optioned outfield prospect Yasiel Puig to Double-A Chattanooga and young infielder Dee Gordon to Triple-A Albuquerque.
Puig nearly hit his way onto the Dodgers’ Opening Day roster this spring, batting .526 with a 1.351 OPS in 59 Cactus League plate appearances. But he has logged just 95 plate appearances in the minors and the Los Angeles decision-makers figured he would be better off getting regular action on the farm.
Gordon initially seemed like a candidate to replace the injured Hanley Ramirez at shortstop, but the Dodgers will go with Luis Cruz instead and ask Juan Uribe and Nick Punto to split time at third base. Gordon is one of the fastest players in baseball, but the 24-year-old owns a weak .260/.299/.315 career batting line in 143 major league games.
After letting rumors of the deal percolate for the last week, the Athletics officially announced their two-year, $11 million contract with right-hander Santiago Casilla on Friday (and threw a little bit of shade at the Giants, too). As previously reported, the contract includes an extra $3 million in performance bonuses.
Casilla, 36, got his major league start with Oakland back in 2004, racking up a 5.11 ERA and four saves over six seasons in the A’s bullpen. After picking up a minor league deal with the Giants in 2010, the righty flitted in and out of the closing role with varying degrees of success. Notwithstanding a slight downturn in his production rate during the 2016 season, he earned 123 saves and a 2.42 ERA during the past seven years in San Francisco. Securing another closing role might be a little tougher across the Bay, however, with a bullpen that includes fellow closers Ryan Madson, Ryan Dull and Sean Doolittle.
Why is this man smiling? Man, I wouldn’t be smiling if I read what I just read.
This is the week when ESPN’s Keith Law releases his prospect and farm system rankings. He kicks off his content this week with a top-to-bottom ranking of all 30 farm systems. As a rule he limits his analysis to players who are currently in the minors and who have not yet exhausted their rookie of the year eligibility.
For the second straight year, Law ranks the Braves as the best system in baseball. Number two — making a big leap from last year’s number 13 ranking – is the New York Yankees. Dead last: the Arizona Diamondbacks, which Law says “Dave Stewart ritually disemboweled” over the past two years. That’s gotta hurt.
If you want to know the reasons and the rankings of everyone in between you’ll have to get an ESPN Insider subscription. Sorry, I know everyone hates to pay for content on the Internet, but Keith and others who do this kind of work put a lot of damn work into it and this is what pays their bills. I typically don’t like to pay for content myself, but I do pay for an ESPN Insider subscription. It’s worth it for Law’s work alone.