Veteran infielder/outfielder Michael Morse has reportedly struck a minor league deal with the Giants, according to Baseball America’s Matt Eddy.
After posting a .275/.390/.391 line through 45 games with the Pirates in 2015, Morse was released just one month into the 2016 season when the club cleared roster space to accommodate right-hander A.J. Schugel. He hasn’t seen a full workload since his last stint with the Giants in 2014, batting .279/.336/.475 with 16 home runs while splitting time in left field and first base.
The 34-year-old has an invite to spring training, but could find it hard to break into the Giants’ 25-man roster again. Brandon Belt has a lock on first base, with most off days allotted to Buster Posey. Left field offers more flexibility, though the Giants appear to have a plethora of players that could see time there in 2017, including Jarrett Parker, Mac Williamson, Kyle Blanks and Chris Marrero, among others. Defensively, Morse doesn’t stand out in the crowd, though he could add a decent bat off the bench if need be.
Outfielder Justin Ruggiano also picked up a minor league contract, per Eddy’s report. The two deals have yet to be confirmed by the team.
Yesterday Mike Trout left the Marlins-Angels game after hurting his thumb while sliding head first into second base. After the game the Angels talked about it as if it were just a sprain. Trout had an MRI today, however, and the diagnosis is far worse: he has a torn thumb ligament.
While a treatment option has not yet been chosen, surgery is a possibility. A certainty is that he’ll miss, at the very least, several weeks of play. He has been placed on the disabled list for the first time in his career.
Trout, the reigning AL MVP and, without question, the best player in baseball, is batting .337/.461/.742 with 16 home runs, 36 RBI, 36 runs scored, and 10 stolen bases in 206 plate appearances this season. Even with the one of the weaker supporting casts in baseball, Trout had the Angels near .500 and in at least arguable contention in the AL West.
Without him, they are likely sunk. Without him, baseball is worse off.
SAN FRANCISCO — Nationals slugger Bryce Harper and San Francisco reliever Hunter Strickland both landed punches to the head during a wild brawl that erupted Monday after a hit by pitch.
Harper was hit in the right hip by Strickland’s 98 mph fastball in the eighth inning with Washington ahead 2-0.
Harper pointed the bat toward Strickland, charged the mound and fired his batting helmet wide of the pitcher. They started to swing away and they each connected as the benches and bullpens emptied.
At least two Giants players forcefully dragged Strickland from the middle of the brawl all the way into the dugout. Harper and Strickland were both ejected.
In the 2014 NL Division Series, Harper hit two home runs off Strickland. After the star’s second shot, in Game 4, he stared at Strickland as he rounded the bases.