Evan Drellich of the Houston Chronicle has a good article up today about the Astros’ bullpen situation. Specifically, who will do what, whether it will be a “closer by committee,” what, exactly, that often-misused term means and comments from the various folks involved in the Astros’ bullpen about it all.
The best comment, by far, comes from manager Bo Porter, who handles the usual objection to closer-by-committee setups — pitchers like to have defined roles and hate to be jerked around — thusly:
“You know what your role is? When your phone rings and your name’s called, go get people out,” Porter said. “That’s your role. That’s why you’re in the bullpen.”
I love Bo Porter.
The Rays acquired minor league reliever Drew Smith from the Tigers on Friday, per a team announcement. The move will close the loop on the trade the two teams began in January for backup outfielder Mikie Mahtook.
Smith, 23, pitched his first full season in Single-A West Michigan in 2016, turning in a 2.96 ERA, 4.3 BB/9 and 11.5 SO/9 in 48 2/3 innings. The right-hander is still several levels away from making any impact on the Rays’ major league roster, but appears to be progressing steadily in two seasons of pro ball and has delivered two runs, four walks and 12 strikeouts in his first 11 2/3 innings at High-A Lakeland this season. Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that he’ll be reassigned to the Rays’ High-A Charlotte this week.
The Yankees have activated shortstop Didi Gregorius from the 10-day disabled list, the club announced on Friday. Infielder Pete Kozma was designated for assignment to clear roster space.
Gregorius, 27, suffered a strained right shoulder while playing in the World Baseball Classic last month. He’s in Friday’s starting lineup, batting sixth against the Orioles.
Last season, Gregorius hit .276/.304/.447 with 20 home runs and 70 RBI in 597 plate appearances.