When the Red Sox demoted Will Middlebrooks to Triple-A on June 25 he was hitting .193 in 53 games and he wasn’t particularly great for Pawtucket, hitting .268 with 10 homers and a .790 OPS in 45 games.
However, after trading Jose Iglesias in the deal for Jake Peavy the Red Sox recalled Middlebrooks from the minors and he’s been on fire since. Middlebrooks homered yesterday against the Giants, making him 15-for-34 (.441) with two homers and three doubles in 11 games since the recall.
His season totals are going to look ugly no matter what because of his terrible first half, but Middlebrooks getting back to the productive, power-hitting third baseman he was as a rookie last season would be huge for the Red Sox down the stretch.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Royals have signed free agent reliever Neftali Feliz, pending a physical. The Brewers designated Feliz for assignment last week and released him on Monday.
Feliz, 29, opened the season as the Brewers’ closer, but struggled and was eventually taken out of the role in mid-May, giving way to Corey Knebel. In 29 appearances spanning 27 innings with the Brewers, Feliz posted a 6.00 ERA with a 21/15 K/BB ratio.
The Royals have had bullpen issues of their own, so Feliz will try to provide some stability given his track record. It’s not clear yet if the Royals want to let Feliz get his feet wet at Triple-A or throw him right into the bullpen mix.
Newsday’s Marc Carig reports that the Mets may move Asdrubal Cabrera to second base when he returns from the disabled list. Cabrera has been on the disabled list since June 13 with a sprained left thumb, but he’s expected to be activated on Friday.
Cabrera, 31, last played second base in 2014 with the Nationals. He has played shortstop exclusively as a Met the last two seasons. Jose Reyes would continue to play shortstop if the Mets were to go through with the position change. Cabrera would displace T.J. Rivera, who has been playing second base in place of the injured Neil Walker.
In 196 plate appearances this season, Cabrera is hitting .244/.321/.392 with six home runs and 20 RBI. He has made 11 defensive errors, which is tied for the third-most among shortstops behind Tim Anderson (16) and Dansby Swanson (12).