Juan Lagares landed on the disabled list in mid-April with a pulled right hamstring, but he only ended up missing the minimum 15 days and will be in the starting lineup tonight when the Mets take on the Rockies in Colorado. He’s hitting leadoff against right-hander Juan Nicasio.
Lagares was off to an impressive start at the plate prior to his injury, hitting .314/.345/.471 with one home run, three doubles, one triple, and seven RBI over his first 55 plate appearances. This is in addition to his usual excellent defense in center field.
Nobody expects Lagares to maintain what he was doing at the plate before going on the disabled list, but if he can post something in the range of a .320 on-base percentage and a .700 OPS, the Mets would probably be thrilled. His defense should give him plenty of leash. There’s no reason why the 25-year-old shouldn’t be playing everyday. Eric Young, Jr. is the odd man out in the Mets’ outfield tonight and might be a fourth outfielder now that Lagares is back from the disabled list.
MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki reports that the Dodgers have acquired catcher Carlos Ruiz and cash from the Phillies in exchange for catcher A.J. Ellis, minor league pitcher Tommy Bergjans, and a player to be named later. It was reported on Wednesday that Ruiz and first baseman Ryan Howard both cleared waivers and that Ruiz was drawing interest from a couple of teams.
Ruiz, 37, has served as the backup catcher behind Cameron Rupp. Over 193 plate appearances, he hit .261/.368/.352. He continued to play solid defense and has always had a reputation for handling his pitchers very well. In fact, in a commercial for the video game MLB 2k11, former Phillie Roy Halladay essentially professed his love for Ruiz:
Ellis, 35, is a free agent after the season while Ruiz has a club option for the 2017 season worth $4.5 million. It seems likely that the Dodgers pick up that option and make Ruiz Grandal’s backup next year. Ellis hit a lousy .194/.285/.252 in 161 plate appearances, but the Phillies aren’t particularly concerned with his production since they’re still facilitating their rebuilding process.
Bergjans, 23, has spent the season with High-A Rancho Cucamonga. He’s posted a 4.98 ERA with a 133/29 K/BB ratio in 130 innings spanning 21 starts and three relief appearances. He went to school in Haverford, PA so the Phillies are bringing in a local guy.
Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista has been activated from the 15-day disabled list ahead of Thursday night’s game against the Angels, the club announced. Utilityman Ryan Goins has been optioned to Triple-A Buffalo to create room on the roster.
Bautista missed the minimum 15 days due to a sprained left knee. He’s battled injuries throughout the season, limiting him to just 355 plate appearances over 80 games. He’ll resume play with a .222/.349/.444 triple-slash line, 15 home runs, and 48 RBI.
Bautista is in Thursday night’s starting lineup, batting first and serving as the DH.