Padres shortstop Everth Cabrera, currently enjoying a breakout season, suffered a left hamstring injury in today’s game against the Diamondbacks. He was replaced defensively in the top of the ninth by Pedro Ciriaco after going 3-for-4. The Union-Times suggests Cabrera will likely go on the disabled list along with outfielder Carlos Quentin.
Cabrera is hitting .305 on the season with a .377 on-base percentage and a league-best 31 stolen bases in 37 attempts. FanGraphs values him at 3.4 Wins Above Replacement already, putting him in a ninth-place tie with Orioles third baseman Manny Machado. Losing Cabrera is a crushing blow to the Padres, winners of six consecutive games. In fourth place, they are only two games behind the first-place Diamondbacks.
Long-time rotation mainstay Tom Koehler was optioned to Triple-A New Orleans on Monday and reliever Hunter Cervenka was recalled, the Marlins announced.
Koehler, 31, made 131 starts out of the Marlins’ rotation over the last five years, but his 12 this season have not been good, so the club hopes he can figure things out with a stint in the minors. He’s carrying a 7.92 ERA with a 44/29 K/BB ratio in 55 2/3 innings. Koehler battled bursitis in his right shoulder in May and June, which may partially explain his struggles.
Cervenka, 27, posted a 4.50 ERA with a 34/21 K/BB ratio in 34 innings of relief with New Orleans. He hasn’t pitched in the majors yet this season, but compiled a 3.53 ERA over 43 1/3 innings in the bigs last year in the Marlins’ bullpen.
At the trade deadline, relief pitching is the name of the game and one of the names clearly available is Pat Neshek. Today Mark Feinsand of MLB.com reports that the Nationals, Dodgers, and Red Sox are among the clubs who are closely scouting the Phillies reliever. Last week Ken Rosenthal reported that the Brewers and Rays were involved as well.
Neshek is an impending free agent, so he may come cheaper than Justin Wilson or some of the other bullpen arms available right now. The All-Star is 36 and is posting a fantastic season, featuring a 1.12 ERA and 45/5 K/BB ratio over 40.1 innings this season.