Michael Kirkman diagnosed with recurrence of skin cancer

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Almost exactly one year ago Rangers left-hander Michael Kirkman completed treatment for skin cancer, but the team announced yesterday that he’s been diagnosed with a recurrence of cutaneous lymphoma on his right triceps following a recent screening.

Chris Toman of MLB.com reports that Kirkman will undergo radiation treatment and has been placed on the disabled list, with the hope that he’ll be able to continue throwing and potentially rejoin the team in just a few weeks.

Kirkman, who’s been struggling on the mound and asked to take some time off after the diagnosis, said:

It’s just kind of one of those things. It’s kind of a blessing in disguise. I can take a step back, take a mental break and work some bugs out.

That’s a pretty amazing attitude to have in the face of such adversity.

Anibal Sanchez accepts optional assignment to Triple-A

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The Tigers announced on Monday that pitcher Anibal Sanchez has accepted an optional assignment to Triple-A Toledo. Pitcher Warwick Saupold was recalled from Toledo to take Sanchez’s roster spot.

Sanchez, 33, continued to struggle this season pitching out of the bullpen. He gave up 26 runs (21 earned) on 34 hits and nine walks with 22 strikeouts in 21 innings. Nine of those 34 hits were home runs. Sanchez finished the 2015 season with a 4.99 ERA and last season with a 5.87 ERA, so he’s had a rough go of it in recent years.

The decision to go to Triple-A was Sanchez’s, Anthony Fenech of the Free Press reports. Sanchez wants to be stretched out as a starting pitcher again.

Braves release James Loney

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Just a few days after inking him to a minor league deal, the Braves have released first baseman James Loney, the team announced on Monday. Loney became expendable when the Braves acquired Matt Adams from the Cardinals on Saturday as a replacement for the injured Freddie Freeman.

Loney, 33, appeared in two games at Triple-A Gwinnett. He had one hit, a single, and one walk in eight plate appearances.

Loney will likely have to wait for another team to deal with an injured first baseman or DH before he can secure another contract.