The lawyers of Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez have contacted the Major League Baseball Players Association to begin a grievance process over claims the Yankees mishandled Rodriguez’s medical treatment dating back to last October, according to ESPN’s Andrew Marchand.
Rodriguez’s lawyers accuse the Yankees of putting Rodriguez in the field despite his bad hip, and they have accused Yankees president Randy Levine of telling a surgeon that he would be fine if Rodriguez was never able to play again. They also say that the Yankees did not allow Rodriguez to play with a Grade 1 quad strain despite Rodriguez’s claims that he was healthy enough to play.
Per ESPN, Levine told Rodriguez yesterday to “put up or shut up”, offering to publicize his medical records with his consent.
Marchand notes that Rodriguez’s camp notifying the union is the first official step towards having the situation resolved by arbitrator Frederic Horowitz. Horowitz will also arbitrate Rodriguez’s 211-game suspension, but that isn’t expected to resolve until November at the earliest.
The Braves have signed reliever Blaine Boyer to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training, MLB.com’s Mark Bowman reports. Bowman adds that the right-hander has a “good chance” to make the Braves’ bullpen out of spring training.
Boyer, 35, spent the past season with the Brewers, finishing with a 3.95 ERA and a 26/17 K/BB ratio in 66 innings.
Boyer, of course, started his professional baseball career with the Braves as they selected him in the third round of the 2000 draft. Since the Braves traded him in 2009, Boyer has pitched for the Cardinals, Diamondbacks, Mets, Padres, and Twins along with the Brewers.
Update (6:48 PM EST): Topkin reports the contract will be of the major league variety.
Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays and free agent reliever Shawn Tolleson are close to finalizing a contract.
Tolleson, who turns 29 years old on Thursday, had an ugly 2016 season, finishing with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He was one of the Rangers’ best relievers in the two seasons prior to that, however, which included saving 35 games in 2015.