Ivan Nova went 16-4 with a 3.70 ERA for the Yankees as a 24-year-old in 2011, convincing quite a few people that he was a future star, but he’s been terrible since then and now he’s headed back to Triple-A.
Nova, who hasn’t pitched in the minors since 2011, was demoted in tandem with the Yankees activating Kevin Youkilis and Mark Teixeira from the disabled list. They needed to make space on the roster and Nova has a 5.16 ERA in four starts and two relief appearances after posting a 5.02 ERA in 28 starts last year.
He’ll no doubt be back and if the Yankees have truly soured on Nova they could almost surely get something for him in trade, especially since his 179/66 K/BB ratio in 193 innings since 2012 is a whole lot better than his ERA. At age 26 he still has plenty of upside, but the Yankees are predictably running out of patience.
The Orioles have re-signed infielder Pedro Alvarez to a minor league deal, per a report from Roch Kubatko of MASN Sports. The deal guarantees Alvarez $1 million if he makes the 40-man roster and another $2 million in potential performance bonuses. The team has yet to confirm the deal.
This will be Alvarez’s third year with the Orioles. After posting decent numbers in 2016, the 31-year-old was relegated to the minors for the majority of the 2017 season and saw only 14 games at the big league level. He finished the year with an underwhelming .239/.294/.442 batting line and 26 home runs through 595 plate appearances for Triple-A Norfolk.
Alvarez is expected to split his time between first base and DH this spring, and MLB.com’s Brittany Ghiroli notes that he’s unlikely to experiment with another outfield role. While he isn’t too far removed from his last productive season in the majors, the veteran infielder will function purely as insurance for first baseman Chris Davis and designated hitter Mark Trumbo and will likely begin the season in the minors.