Cubs sign Joel Pineiro


Joel Pineiro hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2011, but he’s still giving it a go at age 35 and the right-hander has agreed to a minor-league contract with the Cubs.

Pineiro had a 5.13 ERA and a miniscule strikeout rate in 146 innings for the Angels in 2011, but for the most part he was usually a decent mid-rotation starter for a decade or so. He’ll begin his comeback at Triple-A Iowa.

He pitched briefly for the Red Sox when the Cubs’ current front office was in charge in Boston, appearing in 31 games as a reliever with a 5.03 ERA in 2007.

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.