Twins pitcher Andrew Albers likely headed to Korea


Andrew Albers made his big-league debut last season at age 28, reaching the majors after pitching independent ball as recently as 2010, but now the left-hander is headed to Korea.

Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports that Albers has a tentative agreement to sign with the Hanwha Eagles of the Korean Baseball Organization. He’s currently on the 40-man roster, which means the Twins also agreed to let him go and may be getting some monetary compensation out of the deal.

Albers was named the Twins’ minor league pitcher of the year, but he was unlikely to be on the Opening Day roster and would be behind several higher-upside pitchers in line for call-ups.

Mike Fiers may not be ready for start of regular season due to back issue

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Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press reports that Tigers starter Mike Fiers is dealing with a back issue and may not be ready for the start of the season. Manager Ron Gardenhire characterized the injury as a “stiff back” and added, “Maybe a little bit of a bulging disk or something like that.”

Fiers, 32, signed a one-year, $6 million deal with the Tigers in December. He has had a forgettable spring, yielding 12 runs on 10 hits and eight walks with seven strikeouts in 11 1/3 innings.

Fiers had a rotation spot locked up along with Michael Fulmer, Jordan Zimmermann, and Francisco Liriano. Matt Boyd and Daniel Norris were battling it out for the No. 5 spot. If Fiers opens the regular season on the 10-day disabled list, both could have spots in the rotation.