UPDATE: In addition to pitching poorly enough to justify being released, Pineiro has been handed a 50-game suspension from MLB for “a prohibited stimulant.” Pretty safe to say his career is over.
Joel Pineiro’s latest comeback attempt is over, as Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish reports that the Angels have released the veteran right-hander from Triple-A.
Pineiro was once a solid mid-rotation starter for the Mariners, Cardinals, and Angels, earning nearly $50 million over a 12-year career, but he hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2011 and at age 35 he looks finished.
He had a 7.48 ERA in four starts at Triple-A for the Angels and was previously released from Double-A by the Cubs earlier this season.
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.