Pablo Sandoval exits game with more discomfort in elbow

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Pablo Sandoval was back in the Giants’ starting lineup last night for the first time since March 16, but he didn’t last long.

According to Daniel Brown of the San Jose Mercury News, Sandoval went 0-for-2 as the DH before he was pulled due to more soreness in his right elbow. He has been dealing with a bone spur and an irritated ulnar nerve in the very same elbow for the past two weeks, so the Giants didn’t want to push him any further.

“He said there was a little discomfort, so we shut him down,” Bochy said.

Sandoval has previously expressed confidence that he would be ready for Opening Day against the Dodgers on Monday, but he said after last night’s game that he’s now going to take things day by day. If Sandoval isn’t available for the early part of the season, the Giants are expected to go with Joaquin Arias at third base.

Tigers release Francisco Rodriguez

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Tigers’ right-handed reliever Francisco Rodriguez was released on Friday, per a team announcement. The club recalled fellow right-hander Bruce Rondon from Triple-A Toledo in a corresponding move.

The former closer got the boot after losing his closing role in early May, giving left-hander Justin Wilson a chance to impress at the back end of the bullpen. It’s been a rough year for Rodriguez, who manufactured six blown saves and a 7.82 ERA, 3.9 BB/9 and 8.2 SO/9 over 25 1/3 innings for the Tigers. The final straw, it seemed, came with Robinson Cano‘s grand slam in the seventh inning of the Tigers’ 6-9 loss to the Mariners on Thursday.

While the demotion to a clean-up role and an apparent lack of communication caused Rodriguez considerable frustration, he’s two years removed from his last dominant performance as a major league closer and has shown few signs of returning to form. His recent slump doesn’t diminish the impressive totals he’s racked up over his 16-year career — 437 saves and six All-Star nominations among them — but if he can’t break out of it soon, he may not receive the kind of high leverage role he’s seeking with another big league team, either.

The Red Sox sign Jhonny Peralta

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The Red Sox have signed third baseman Jhonny Peralta to a minor-league deal. He’ll report to Pawtucket.

Peralta, 35, hit a paltry .204/.259/.204 in 58 plate appearances for the Cardinals this year. But with Pablo Sandoval on the disabled list — and ineffective when he hasn’t been — the Sox could use some infield depth.

This is the second former Tiger that former Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski has picked up today, after signing Doug Fister. No word if he’s kicking the tires on Andy Dirks or Brennan Boesch.