Add another thing to the “stuff that’s gone wrong for the Diamondbacks this season” pile, as right-hander J.J. Putz is headed to the disabled list with a strained forearm.
Putz has a long history of arm problems and tried to pitch through this recent issue, but it predictably didn’t work well so Arizona shut him down.
Putz posted a sub-3.00 ERA with big strikeout rates in each season from 2010-2013 and as a 37-year-old reliever in the final season of his contract he’d be a prime trade candidate if/when the Diamondbacks decide to start selling, but lingering forearm problems could scare contenders off.
Free agent right-hander Henderson Alvarez signed a deal with the Tigres de Quintana Roo of the Mexican Baseball League earlier this week, FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Friday. The righty wasn’t necessarily too fringey a player to hack it in the big leagues, but there were no MLB takers in attendance during his showcase in Venezuela last month and he clearly felt it best to try his luck elsewhere.
The 27-year-old’s last major league gig came with the Phillies, for whom he delivered a 4.30 ERA, 6.8 BB/9 and 3.7 SO/9 over 14 2/3 innings in 2017. While he’s not too far removed from his first and only All-Star bid in 2014, he was besieged by shoulder issues in 2015 and 2016 and underwent season-ending surgeries as a result.
That added injury risk, coupled with the fact that he hasn’t pitched more than 22 innings in a single season since 2014, may have been too much for major league teams to take on this spring. Assuming he steers clear of further injuries, however, a return to the majors may not be entirely out of the question in years to come.