It’s not as big a deal as the Astros trading for Justin Verlander, but the Texas Rangers have boosted their rotation a bit by acquiring right-handed starter Miguel Gonzalez from the Chicago White Sox for a minor league infielder.
Gonzalez is 7-10 with a 4.31 ERA in 22 starts this season but he’s pitched pretty well of late, going 2-0 with a 1.85 ERA in last five starts. His last start game just yesterday, when he got a no-decision, allowing three runs over six innings in the White Sox’s 5-4 loss to Minnesota.
The Rangers, who are four games back for the second Wild Card spot with 29 games left to play, sent minor league infielder Ti’Quan Forbes to Chicago. They made room on their 40-man roster when right-hander Anthony Bass was designated for assignment.
The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.
Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.
Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.