Matt Harvey left after the seventh inning of this afternoon’s game against the Marlins with a back injury. He had held the Marlins to one run over seven innings. In the dugout after his final inning, he spoke to pitching coach Dan Warthen about the injury, prompting manager Terry Collins to relieve him with Brandon Lyon.
Harvey, though, says he expects to make his next start on Friday against the Cubs, per ESPN’s Adam Rubin. With a 2.10 ERA and 95 strikeouts in 90 innings, Harvey is one of the early contenders for the NL Cy Young award.
The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.
Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.
Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.