The Dodgers acquired Twins’ lefty reliever Jason Wheeler for cash considerations, the team announced on Friday. In a corresponding move, the Dodgers shifted third baseman Rob Segedin to the 60-day disabled list to clear space for Wheeler on the 40-man roster. The rookie southpaw was optioned to Triple-A Oklahoma City, where he’s expected to help balance out a predominantly right-handed pitching staff alongside fellow left-handers Justin Marks, Patrick Schuster and Julio Urias.
Wheeler, 26, made his major league debut with the Twins in May. He distributed six hits, five runs and four walks over three innings and was designated for assignment after the Twins took back-to-back losses against the Astros. Prior to the lefty’s call-up, his numbers looked fairly stable in Triple-A Rochester, where he pitched to a 4-1 record out of Rochester’s rotation and maintained a 4.50 ERA, 2.0 BB/9 and 7.6 SO/9 through 44 innings.
While Wheeler has yet to prove himself at the major league level, his presence in Triple-A Oklahoma City will give the club some extra bullpen depth. Performance hasn’t been much of an issue for the Dodgers lately — according to FanGraphs, they currently rank first among all major league bullpens with a collective 4.2 fWAR and sit just behind the Indians with a 2.54 ERA.
The Rockies announced a minor swap of relief pitchers on Monday evening. The Cubs sent lefty Zac Rosscup to the Rockies in exchange for right-hander Matt Carasiti.
Rosscup, 29, was designated for assignment by the Cubs last Thursday. He spent only two-thirds of an inning in the majors this year and has a 5.32 career ERA across 47 1/3 innings. Rosscup has spent most of the season with Triple-A Iowa, posting a 2.60 ERA in 27 2/3 innings.
Carasiti, 25, spent 15 2/3 innings in the majors last year, putting up an ugly 9.19 ERA. With Triple-A Albuquerque this season, he compiled a 2.37 ERA and a 43/13 K/BB ratio in 30 1/3 innings.
The Associated Press reported that on Monday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit affirmed a district court ruling which holds that the minor leagues are exempt from federal antitrust law, just like the major leagues.
In 2015, four minor leaguers sued Major League Baseball, alleging that MLB violated antitrust laws with its hiring and employment policies. They accused MLB of “restrain[ing] horizontal competition between and among” franchises and “artificially and illegally depressing” the salaries of minor league players.
The U.S. Court of Appeals said the players failed to state an antitrust claim, as the Curt Flood Act of 1998 exempted Minor League Baseball explicitly from antitrust laws.
This case is separate from the Aaron Senne case in which Major League Baseball is accused of violating the Fair Labor Standards Act. That case was recertified as a class action lawsuit in March. In December, Major League Baseball established a political action committee (PAC), which came months after two members of Congress sought to change language in the FLSA so that minor league players could continue to be paid substandard wages.