Tsuyoshi Wada hasn’t thrown a pitch for the Orioles since signing a two-year, $8.15 million contract with the club in December of 2011. And while he is now fully recovered from Tommy John surgery on his left elbow, he’s still not ready to join the big club.
After Wada posted a miserable 8.14 ERA and 20/13 K/BB ratio in 24 1/3 innings over six rehab starts with Triple-A Norfolk, Roch Kubatko of MASNSports.com reports that the Orioles were able to get his consent to accept a minor league assignment. It’s not unusual for pitchers to struggle with their command and control after Tommy John surgery, so the hope is that the 32-year-old returns to form and becomes an option for the Orioles’ rotation at some point during the second half.
Wada posted a 1.51 ERA in 185 innings in 2011 for the Fukuoka Softbank Hawks of Japan’s Pacific League prior to signing with the Orioles. His contract with Baltimore includes a $5 million option for next season.
The Rockies announced a minor swap of relief pitchers on Monday evening. The Cubs sent lefty Zac Rosscup to the Rockies in exchange for right-hander Matt Carasiti.
Rosscup, 29, was designated for assignment by the Cubs last Thursday. He spent only two-thirds of an inning in the majors this year and has a 5.32 career ERA across 47 1/3 innings. Rosscup has spent most of the season with Triple-A Iowa, posting a 2.60 ERA in 27 2/3 innings.
Carasiti, 25, spent 15 2/3 innings in the majors last year, putting up an ugly 9.19 ERA. With Triple-A Albuquerque this season, he compiled a 2.37 ERA and a 43/13 K/BB ratio in 30 1/3 innings.
The Associated Press reported that on Monday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit affirmed a district court ruling which holds that the minor leagues are exempt from federal antitrust law, just like the major leagues.
In 2015, four minor leaguers sued Major League Baseball, alleging that MLB violated antitrust laws with its hiring and employment policies. They accused MLB of “restrain[ing] horizontal competition between and among” franchises and “artificially and illegally depressing” the salaries of minor league players.
The U.S. Court of Appeals said the players failed to state an antitrust claim, as the Curt Flood Act of 1998 exempted Minor League Baseball explicitly from antitrust laws.
This case is separate from the Aaron Senne case in which Major League Baseball is accused of violating the Fair Labor Standards Act. That case was recertified as a class action lawsuit in March. In December, Major League Baseball established a political action committee (PAC), which came months after two members of Congress sought to change language in the FLSA so that minor league players could continue to be paid substandard wages.