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Phillies claim Juan Nicasio off waivers from the Pirates

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The Phillies announced on Thursday that the club claimed pitcher Juan Nicasio off waivers from the Pirates. First baseman Brock Stassi was designated for assignment to create roster space.

Nicasio is celebrating his 31st birthday on Thursday. This season with the Pirates, the right-hander has put up an impressive 2.85 ERA with a 60/18 K/BB ratio in 60 innings. Nicasio began his career as a starter but has mostly pitched out of the bullpen in recent years.

Nicasio is owed the remainder of his $3.65 million salary and can become a free agent after the season.

Stassi, 28, struggled in 51 games in the majors this year. He hit .167/.278/.295 across 90 plate appearances. Things didn’t go much better with Triple-A Lehigh Valley as he mustered a .682 OPS in 186 PA.

Angels hire Brad Ausmus as special assistant to the GM

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Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports that the Angels have hired former Tigers manager Brad Ausmus as a special assistant to GM Billy Eppler.

Ausmus, 48, managed the Tigers for four seasons, accruing a 314-332 (.486) record. The Tigers fired him after the 2017 season and hired former Twins manager Ron Gardenhire in his place.

Ausmus will assist with scouting and evaluations of players in the Angels’ system, amateurs, and players in other organizations.