The Angels announced this evening that they acquired right-handed reliever Vinnie Pestano from the Indians in exchange for minor league right-hander Michael Clevinger. Per Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times, Pestano will report to Triple-A Salt Lake.
Pestano was quietly one of the game’s best relievers from 2011-2012, but he has a 4.26 ERA in 50 appearances dating back to the start of last season and has spent the majority of this season in the minors. While his stuff isn’t what it once was, his numbers in Triple-A have been pretty good this year, with a 1.78 ERA, six saves, and 37/12 K/BB ratio over 30 1/3 innings. Perhaps the Angels will catch some lightening in a bottle down the stretch. If not, they’ll likely just non-tender him this offseason.
Clevinger, a fourth-round pick in 2011, has posted a 4.31 ERA and 85/32 K/BB ratio in 79 1/3 innings over 18 starts between Class A Burlington and High-A Inland Empire this season. Baseball America ranked him as the Angels’ No. 17 prospect over the winter.
Jake Arrieta‘s bat is in midseason form already. The Cubs’ ace swatted a solo home run to center field off of Zack Greinke in Thursday afternoon’s Grapefruit League exhibition game, his first homer of the spring.
The blast went 465 feet, according to MLB.com’s Daren Willman.
Arrieta has hit two home runs in each of the past two seasons. Madison Bumgarner (eight) and Noah Syndergaard (four) are the only other pitchers to match or exceed his output in that department.
Greinke, meanwhile, is hoping to bounce back after a miserable 2016 season. He finished with an uncharacteristic 4.37 ERA in 26 starts in his first year with the Diamondbacks.
Angels first baseman Luis Valbuena will miss the next four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.
Valbuena, 31, signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Angels in January and was on track to get the lion’s share of the playing time at first base. While he’s out, however, C.J. Cron will handle first base on a regular basis. When Valbeuna returns, the two will likely form a platoon.
Last year with the Astros, Valbuena hit a solid .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances.