Padres lefty Cory Luebke has suffered a setback in his quest to return from Tommy John surgery, stopping his throwing program for the second time in 2013 according to MLB.com’s Corey Brock. Luebke posted a 2.61 ERA in five starts last year before landing on the DL in late April and undergoing TJ surgery in late May.
Luebke showed promise when the Padres moved him from the bullpen to the rotation in 2011 at the end of June, posting a 3.31 ERA in 17 starts. He was expected to be a big part of the Padre rotation until the injury setback. Unfortunately, they will have to wait even longer to see the 28-year-old in action.
The Rangers have informed 1B/DH Mike Napoli the club will not exercise his 2018 option, worth $11 million, Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News reports. Instead, the Rangers will pay Napoli $2.5 million to buy him out of his contract, making him a free agent.
Napoli, 35, hit a disappointing .193/.285/.428 with 29 home runs and 66 RBI in 485 plate appearances this past season. Given his age and declining production, it’s not shocking that the Rangers want to look elsewhere.
Napoli turns 36 at the end of the month. Given his age and worsening peripheral stats, he will likely have to settle for a one-year deal this offseason.