UPDATE: Brian McCann has been placed on the 7-day concussion disabled list. The Yankees have recalled Austin Romine from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre to take his place on the active roster.
The Yankees have also announced the unconditional release of second baseman Brian Roberts, who was recently designated for assignment.
9:31 a.m. ET: Yankees catcher Brian McCann suffered what’s being termed as a “mild concussion” after he was hit in the mask by a foul tip in the third inning last night against the Indians.
McCann stayed in the game initially, but he was lifted for a pinch-hitter in the sixth inning. According to Bryan Hoch and Jamal Collier of MLB.com, Yankees manager Joe Girardi didn’t like what he heard during a conversation with McCann and didn’t want to take any chances.
“He said it was his jaw,” Girardi said. “He felt like his jaw got jammed. And then in talking to him later when he came in, in the sixth, he said he felt a little foggy. He was having a hard time putting words to it, so I helped him. I said, ‘You’re out.’ He didn’t want to come out, but I said, ‘You’re out.'”
FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reports that McCann will be examined by a neurologist this morning before the Yankees decide the next step, with a trip to the 7-day concussion disabled list a possibility. Francisco Cervelli would take over as the starting catcher if he needs to miss some time while Austin Romine would likely be called up from Triple-A.
McCann, who signed a five-year, $85 million deal contact with the Yankees over the winter, is batting .238/.294/.384 with 13 home runs and 49 RBI over 103 games this season.
UPDATE, 12:07 p.m. EDT: The Royals have confirmed reports of Yordano Ventura’s death with an official statement. No further details pertaining to the accident have been divulged.
Terrible, terrible news: Christian Moreno of ESPN reports that Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura has been killed in an automobile accident in the Dominican Republic. His death has been confirmed by police. He was only 25 years-old. There are as of yet no details about the accident.
Ventura was a four-year veteran, having debuted in 2013 but truly bursting onto the scene for the Royals in 2014. That year he went 14-10 with a 3.20 ERA in 183 innings, ascending to the national stage along with the entire Royals team with some key performances in that year’s ALDS and World Series. The following year Ventura won 13 games for the World Champion Royals and again appeared in the playoffs and World Series.
Ventura was often in the middle of controversy — he found himself in several controversies arising out of his habit of hitting and brushing back hitters — but he was an undeniably electric young talent who was poised to anchor the Royals rotation for years to come. His loss, like that of Jose Fernandez just this past September, is incalculable to both his team, his fans and to Major League Baseball as a whole.
Our thoughts go out to his family, his friends, his teammates and his fans.
Free agent right-hander Tim Lincecum isn’t ready to hang up his cleats just yet. At least, that’s the word from Lincecum’s agent, Rick Thurman, who says the 32-year-old is still “throwing and getting ready for the season” (via Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News).
Lincecum may not be ready to enter retirement, but another quote from Thurman suggests that he’ll be picky about where he pitches next. He doesn’t appear open to pitching overseas, and despite not having a contract for 2017 (or even any serious suitors), the right-hander is set on pitching in the big leagues this year. Whether or not he’s willing to take a bullpen role to do so remains to be seen.
While Baggarly predicts some interest in the veteran righty, there’s not much in Lincecum’s recent history to inspire faith in him as a starter, or even a reliever. He picked up a one-year, $2.5 million contract with the Angels following his hip surgery in 2015, and went 2-6 in 2016 with a 9.16 ERA, 5.4 BB/9 and 7.5 SO/9 over 38 1/3 innings. At this point, a minor league contract seems like the surest path back to major league success, though he’s unlikely to find an open spot on the Giants’ or Angels’ rosters anytime soon.