Yankees general manager Brian Cashman went off the handle earlier this week following a seemingly harmless Tweet from Alex Rodriguez, so it only makes sense that the club is currently showing interest in free agent third baseman Ian Stewart. That’s right, ESPN’s Buster Olney hears that the two sides have been in touch about a potential minor league deal.
Of course, Stewart was released by the Cubs earlier this week after he completed a suspension for violating the “loyalty clause” in his contract by ranting about the organization on Twitter. The 28-year-old struggled through wrist injuries in 2011 and 2012 and was batting just .168/.286/.372 with five home runs through 40 games with Triple-A Iowa this season, so expectations are pretty low at this point, but there’s no harm in a minor league deal. Even if he doesn’t end up with the Yankees, he should find a new home relatively soon.
Thursday is September 1, which means rosters expand. As a result, the Nationals plan to promote pitcher Mat Latos to the major league roster, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. Latos had an opt-out clause for Monday, but after discussing the matter with the team, he agreed to stay at Triple-A Syracuse until Thursday.
Latos, 28, put up a 4.62 ERA over 11 starts with the White Sox before being released in mid-June. Nearly two weeks later, he signed a minor league contract with the Nationals.
In the Nationals’ minor league system, Latos has made three starts for the club’s Gulf Coast League team as well as three for Syracuse. In aggregate, the right-hander has yielded six runs (four earned) on 20 hits and 10 walks with 28 strikeouts in 28 innings.
Latos will likely pitch out of a long relief role for the Nationals and can be used as starting rotation insurance as well.
Mark Buehrle hasn’t officially retired, but he hasn’t thrown a pitch in professional baseball since last October. Still, the Blue Jays wouldn’t mind having some insurance, so manager John Gibbons recently texted Buehrle, “You know, rosters expand in September,” Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith reports.
Buehrle’s response? He texted back a picture of a lake. Sounds like he’s not interested in making a return, at least this year.
Last year, at the age of 36, Buehrle went 15-8 with a 3.81 ERA with a 91/33 K/BB ratio in 198 2/3 innings while leading the league with four complete games. He fell 1 1/3 innings shy of a 15th consecutive 200-inning season. There are many worse ways to end a career.