MLB is warming up for the coming Dodgers-Diamondbacks suspensions: just now it suspended Giants pitcher George Kontos and manager Bruce Bochy. Kontos gets a three-game suspension, Bochy a one-gamer. Bochy will serve his tonight. Kontos, who was just optioned to the minors, will serve his if and when he gets called back up.
The suspensions are the result of Kontos intentionally throwing a pitch at Andrew McCutchen in the bottom of the eighth inning of Tuesday’s game. A warning had already been issued but went unheeded.
Now, crack open the book for Ian Kennedy and friends …
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.