Atlanta Braves v Detroit Tigers

Anibal Sanchez exits start in the fourth inning

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Tigers starterAnibal Sanchez was taken out of tonight’s game against the Twins after three and two-thirds innings due to a shoulder injury, reports Chris Iott. The Tigers had skipped Sanchez’s turn in the rotation last week, making manager Jim Leyland anxious to see his right-hander perform tonight. It didn’t go well, as Sanchez allowed two runs on five hits and an uncharacteristic four walks.

Iott describes Sanchez’s struggles:

The Twins had a runner on and one out in the fourth when Trevor Plouffe ripped a home run an estimated 415 feet to left field to tie the score at 2-2. After Sanchez issued a two-out walk to Brian Dozier, Leyland made a rare trip to the mound that did not result in a pitching change.

But Sanchez threw just one more pitch. Pedro Florimon singled to center to put runners at first and third. After Alex Avila and Sanchez met at the mound and dragged their feet a bit, Leyland returned to the mound and replaced Sanchez with left-hander Darin Downs.

As of right now, there are no indications that Sanchez was lifted due specifically to the shoulder injury, or simply because he performed poorly.

Cubs sign Brett Anderson to a $3.5 million deal

Brett Anderson
AP Photo/J Pat Carter
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Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Cubs have signed pitcher Brett Anderson to a contract, pending a physical. Anderson, apparently, impressed the Cubs during a bullpen session held in Arizona recently. According to Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports, the deal is for $3.5 million, but incentives can bring the total value up to $10 million.

Anderson, 28, has only made a total of 53 starts and 12 relief appearances over the past five seasons due to a litany of injuries. This past season, he made just three starts and one relief appearance, yielding 15 runs on 25 hits and four walks with five strikeouts in 11 1/3 innings. The lefty dealt with back, wrist, and blister issues throughout the year.

When he’s healthy, Anderson is a solid arm to have at the back of a starting rotation or in the bullpen. The defending world champion Cubs aren’t risking much in bringing him on board.

Yordano Ventura’s remaining contract hinges on the results of his toxicology report

DETROIT, MI - SEPTEMBER 24: Yordano Ventura #30 of the Kansas City Royals pitches against the Detroit Tigers during the first inning at Comerica Park on September 24, 2016 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Duane Burleson/Getty Images)
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Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports provides an interesting window into how teams handle a player’s contract after he has died in an accident. It was reported on Sunday that Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura died in a car accident in the Dominican Republic. He had three guaranteed years at a combined $19.25 million as well as two $12 million club options with a $1 million buyout each for the 2020-21 seasons.

What happens to that money? Well, that depends on the results of a toxicology report, Rosenthal explains. If it is revealed that Ventura was driving under the influence, payment to his estate can be nullified. The Royals may still choose to pay his estate some money as a gesture of good will, but they would be under no obligation to do so. However, if Ventura’s death was accidental and not caused by his driving under the influence, then his contract remains fully guaranteed and the Royals would have to pay it towards his estate. The Royals would be reimbursed by insurance for an as yet unknown portion of that contract.

The results of the toxicology report won’t be known for another three weeks, according to Royals GM Dayton Moore. Dominican Republic authorities said that there was no alcohol found at the scene.

Ventura’s situation is different than that of Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez, who died in a boating accident this past September. Fernandez was not under contract beyond 2016. He was also legally drunk and cocaine was found in his system after the accident. Still, it is unclear whether or not Fernandez was driving the boat. As a result, his estate will receive an accidental death payment of $1.05 million as well as $450,000 through the players’ standard benefits package, Rosenthal points out.