Mets reliever Scott Rice leads the league with 73 appearances, but the left-hander won’t be pitching again this season following hernia surgery.
Rice is a good story, finally getting to the majors for the first time at age 31 after 14 seasons in the minors as a former first-round draft pick, and he’s been death to left-handed hitters by holding them to a .174 batting average and .468 OPS in 138 plate appearances.
He’s been awful against righties, allowing them to hit .362 with a .955 OPS, but 65 percent of Rice’s action has come versus lefties. He seems likely to have a spot in the Mets’ bullpen next season.
The Cleveland Indians have released Mike Napoli.
This is not terribly surprising as he was seen as a depth move to begin with. Injury insurance for Yonder Alonso at first base and Edwin Encarnacion at DH, neither of whom are injured at the moment. Napoli was on a minor league contract and the Indians made it clear that, if he can’t find a major league job elsewhere, he’s welcome to come back and cool his heels in Columbus in the event he’s needed later.
Which may be what happens if he wants to keep playing because, after a season in which he hit .193/.285/.428, and a spring in which he hit .218/.310/.431, there aren’t likely to be a ton of takers.