Phillies set-up man Mike Adams is back on the disabled list for a second time, per CSN Philly’s Mike Wisniewski. His first stint was due to a back strain that kept him out May 11-26. This time, he is dealing with biceps tendinitis. It had been nagging him throughout the month of June, but the right-hander was able to avoid the DL until now.
Adams was commonly found in the 92-94 MPH range with his fastball in previous years, but has averaged under 90 MPH this year in the first year of a two-year, $12 million contract with the Phillies. The 34-year-old hasn’t pitched since Wednesday and has had uncharacteristic control issues at times.
To fill Adams’ spot on the roster, the Phillies promoted J.C. Ramirez, a right-hander acquired along with Phillippe Aumont and Tyson Gillies in the trade that sent Cliff Lee to the Mariners in December 2009. Pitching out of the bullpen, Ramirez posted a 5.30 ERA in 37.1 combined innings between Double-A Reading and Triple-A Lehigh Valley.
Every now and then, The Players’ Tribune runs a “five toughest” feature. In 2015, David Ortiz listed the five toughest pitchers he ever faced. Last month, Christian Yelich wrote up the five toughest pitchers in the NL East. Now, it’s Ian Kinsler‘s turn with the five toughest pitchers in the AL Central.
Kinsler goes into detail explaining why each pitcher is difficult to face, so hop over to The Players’ Tribune for his reasoning. His list
Presumably, Kinsler intentionally omitted his Tiger teammates from the list. He has faced Justin Verlander a fair amount earlier in his career, and he has only a .176/.333/.235 batting line in 42 plate appearances against the right-hander. Verlander’s stuff is often described as tough to hit in one phrase or another. Kinsler has also struggled against Indians starter Carlos Carrasco (.590 OPS), but one can understand why he would be omitted from a list of five given who was already listed.
Angels first baseman C.J. Cron hit a grand slam against the Mets on Sunday, but it wasn’t enough to keep his spot on the major league roster as the club announced his demotion to Triple-A Salt Lake on Monday. Infielder Nolan Fantana has been promoted from Salt Lake.
Cron, 27, was hitting a disappointing .232/.281/.305 with one home run and RBI in 90 plate appearances. I guess you can say that wasn’t the kind of Cron job the Angels were expecting. Cron was an above-average hitter in each of his first three seasons, finishing with an OPS+, or adjusted OPS, of 111, 106, and 115 (100 is average).
While Cron is figuring things out in the minors, Luis Valbuena, Jefry Marte, and Albert Pujols could each see some time at first base.