Aramis Ramirez was lifted from the Brewers’ game Saturday against the Yankees after straining his left hamstring while ranging for a groundball on the infield and will be placed on the 15-day disabled list before Tuesday night’s series-opener versus the Pirates, according to Adam McCalvy at MLB.com.
It’s a standard hamstring strain — not minor, but not severe — and will likely sideline Ramirez for around three weeks. Mark Reynolds and Jeff Bianchi are expected to fill in at thrid base while he is out.
Ramirez, 35, has batted just .252/.309/.390 in 34 games played this season, though he does have five home runs and 21 RBI. He finished the 2013 campaign with a .283/.370/.461 batting line, 12 home runs, and 49 RBI in 92 games — missing a large chunk of time because of a left knee injury.
The Brewers are hoping Ryan Braun (oblique) can return from the disabled list Tuesday in a corresponding roster move. They’re clinging to a five-game lead in the National League Central standings.
Free agent middle infielder Danny Espinosa signed a minor-league deal with the Blue Jays, the team announced Saturday. The deal includes an invite to spring training, where Espinosa is scheduled for his first split-squad game against the Orioles this afternoon.
Espinosa, 30, was inked to another minor-league deal with the Yankees in January. The veteran infielder was competing for an infield job until the team picked up second baseman Neil Walker on a one-year, $4 million deal last Monday. Prior to his release, he slashed .160/.276/.320 with one home run through his first 12 games with the Yankees this spring. He didn’t fare much better in the majors last year, either, batting a cumulative .173/.245/.278 with six home runs and a .523 OPS in 295 PA for the Mariners and Rays.
Blue Jays starting shortstop Troy Tulowitzki is still dealing with a bone spur in his heel and has officially been ruled out for Opening Day, which could clear a path for Espinosa to claim a starting role in Toronto. Of course, he won’t be the only candidate under consideration — Yangervis Solarte and Aledmys Diaz are still in the mix as well, though no final decision appears to be made just yet.