Yasmani Grandal showed plenty of promise as a rookie last season, but he was handed a 50-game suspension last fall after he tested positive for elevated levels of testosterone. However, now that Grandal has completed his punishment and a brief rehab assignment, Corey Brock of MLB.com reports that the 24-year-old backstop will rejoin the Padres tomorrow night.
Acquired from the Reds in the Mat Latos deal in December of 2011, Grandal batted .297/.394/.469 with eight home runs, 36 RBI and an .863 OPS in 60 games with the Padres last season. Teammate Nick Hundley took a swipe at Grandal and his testosterone use earlier this month, but they’ll have to coexist behind the plate for now. However, it shouldn’t be long before Grandal gets the opportunity to run away with the starting job.
The Padres plan to send John Baker to Triple-A Tucson in order to make room for Grandal on the active roster.
The Braves have signed reliever Blaine Boyer to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training, MLB.com’s Mark Bowman reports. Bowman adds that the right-hander has a “good chance” to make the Braves’ bullpen out of spring training.
Boyer, 35, spent the past season with the Brewers, finishing with a 3.95 ERA and a 26/17 K/BB ratio in 66 innings.
Boyer, of course, started his professional baseball career with the Braves as they selected him in the third round of the 2000 draft. Since the Braves traded him in 2009, Boyer has pitched for the Cardinals, Diamondbacks, Mets, Padres, and Twins along with the Brewers.
Update (6:48 PM EST): Topkin reports the contract will be of the major league variety.
Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays and free agent reliever Shawn Tolleson are close to finalizing a contract.
Tolleson, who turns 29 years old on Thursday, had an ugly 2016 season, finishing with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He was one of the Rangers’ best relievers in the two seasons prior to that, however, which included saving 35 games in 2015.