Twins activate Ricky Nolasco from the disabled list

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The Twins have activated starter Ricky Nolasco from the 15-day disabled list and optioned Yohan Pino to Triple-A Rochester to create roster space, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reports. Nolasco had been sidelined since July 7 with a flexor pronator strain in his right elbow. He’s slated to oppose Danny Duffy in tonight’s home start against the Royals.

Prior to landing on the disabled list, Nolasco struggled and posted a 5.90 ERA with a 72/28 K/BB ratio over 103 2/3 innings spanning 18 starts. Not exactly the performance the Twins envisioned when they signed him to a four-year, $49 million contract back in November.

Neal notes that Pino could return to the Twins to pitch in one of the two games of August 23’s double-header against the Tigers. Pino struggled in 10 starts for the Twins this season, compiling a 5.37 ERA with a 44/12 K/BB ratio in 55 1/3 innings.

Anibal Sanchez accepts optional assignment to Triple-A

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The Tigers announced on Monday that pitcher Anibal Sanchez has accepted an optional assignment to Triple-A Toledo. Pitcher Warwick Saupold was recalled from Toledo to take Sanchez’s roster spot.

Sanchez, 33, continued to struggle this season pitching out of the bullpen. He gave up 26 runs (21 earned) on 34 hits and nine walks with 22 strikeouts in 21 innings. Nine of those 34 hits were home runs. Sanchez finished the 2015 season with a 4.99 ERA and last season with a 5.87 ERA, so he’s had a rough go of it in recent years.

The decision to go to Triple-A was Sanchez’s, Anthony Fenech of the Free Press reports. Sanchez wants to be stretched out as a starting pitcher again.

Braves release James Loney

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Just a few days after inking him to a minor league deal, the Braves have released first baseman James Loney, the team announced on Monday. Loney became expendable when the Braves acquired Matt Adams from the Cardinals on Saturday as a replacement for the injured Freddie Freeman.

Loney, 33, appeared in two games at Triple-A Gwinnett. He had one hit, a single, and one walk in eight plate appearances.

Loney will likely have to wait for another team to deal with an injured first baseman or DH before he can secure another contract.