Jackie Bradley Jr. began the season as the Red Sox’s starting left fielder, got off to a terrible 3-for-31 (.097) start, and was promptly demoted to Triple-A in mid-April.
He took the demotion in stride, hitting .354 in 20 games for Pawtucket even while dealing with a shoulder injury, and now Maureen Mullen of CSNNE.com reports that the Red Sox have decided to call Bradley back up.
However, this time around manager John Farrell told Mullen that Bradley “would come back as an extra outfielder” rather than as an everyday player, although it’s hard to imagine the Red Sox wanting a 23-year-old sitting on the bench a whole lot.
The left-handed hitting Bradley platooning with the right-handed hitting Jonny Gomes in left field makes sense, although that would cut into Mike Carp’s playing time.
We learned on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu won one of the final two spots in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Brandon McCarthy has won the other, Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register reports. Alex Wood was McCarthy’s competitor for the spot.
McCarthy, 33, posted a 4.85 ERA across four appearances spanning 13 innings this spring, yielding seven earned runs on 14 hits and a walk with seven strikeouts. Wood, a southpaw, gave up five earned runs in six innings against the Reds on Tuesday, which might have factored into the decision.
Last season, McCarthy made nine starts and one relief appearance, posting a 4.95 ERA with a 44/26 K/BB ratio in 40 innings. In the event McCarthy falters, the club has Wood as well as Julio Urias and the injured Scott Kazmir as potential replacements.
The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.
Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.
Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.