The Braves recently acquired reliever Luis Ayala and they found a way to get him on the roster. Right-hander Cristhian Martinez, suffering from a right-shoulder strain, was placed on the disabled list, per David O’Brien. Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez talked about his reliever’s injury:
We were going to pitch him in the last inning, and he threw about 10 or 12 pitches and turned around and told (bullpen coach) Eddie (Perez) that his shoulder was bothering him a little bit,” Gonzalez said. “We shut him down. Varvaro finished the game with two innings of work, and we flew Cristhian to Atlanta to see our doctor.
Martinez allowed two runs in one-third of an inning in his first appearance of the season on April 2 against the Phillies, then tossed two scoreless innings against the Cubs on April 6, also the last time he appeared in a game.
Ayala, 35 years old, also allowed two runs in one-third of an inning in his first appearance of the season on April 3, then followed it up with 1.2 scoreless innings on the fifth.
ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that the Mariners are among the teams that have contacted the Reds about outfielder Jay Bruce. The Mariners enter play Wednesday 51-48, six games out of first place in the AL West and 4.5 games out of the second AL Wild Card slot. Adding an impact bat like Bruce could help in their effort to reach the postseason.
Norichika Aoki and Seth Smith have handled the bulk of the playing time in left field. While Smith has hit well, Aoki has not. Bruce came into Wednesday’s game against the Giants batting .271/.324/.567 with 24 home runs and a league-best 78 RBI.
Bruce can become a free agent after the season if his controlling team declines his $13 million club option for the 2017 season by paying him a $1 million buyout. If he’s traded mid-season, his new team won’t be able to make him a qualifying offer, so the club option may be more enticing than it looks at first glance.
A third-inning two-run home run by Adam Rosales off of R.A. Dickey put the Padres up 2-0, but it also helped the Padres tie a National League record. The Padres have homered in 25 consecutive games, matching the 1998 Braves, the 1994 Tigers, and the 1941 Yankees. The major league record is 27, set by the 2002 Rangers.
The Padres hit three in total on Wednesday in an 8-4 victory against the Blue Jays. One of those dingers was an eighth-inning solo shot by rookie Alex Dickerson, who has now homered in four consecutive games himself. The one he hit on Monday is worth watching, as it got into the upper deck at the Rogers Centre.
As the Padres recently traded Melvin Upton, Jr. to the Jays, Dickerson is likely going to see regular playing time. That’s especially true if he keeps hitting like this.