Indians second baseman Jose Ramirez somehow remains one of the game’s most underrated players despite helping the Indians to the World Series last year and to a 12-game winning streak entering Tuesday’s game against the White Sox.
Ramirez, in particular, has been on fire over his last 11 games, racking up eight doubles and five home runs. He even accomplished a rare feat, accruing five extra-base hits in one game. He stayed hot on Tuesday, drilling a pair of solo home runs in the first and second innings, both off of David Holmberg.
Through four at-bats against the White Sox, Ramirez was batting .312/.364/.569 with 25 home runs, 69 RBI, 92 runs scored, and 15 stolen bases in 566 plate appearances on the season. His 5.2 WAR, per FanGraphs, ranks third-best in the American League among qualified position players behind Jose Altuve (6.5) and Aaron Judge (5.7).
Free agent right-hander Trevor Cahill reportedly has a one-year deal in place with the Athletics, according to MLB.com’s Jane Lee. The exact terms have yet to be disclosed, and as the agreement is still pending a physical, it has not been formally announced by the club.
Cahill, 30, is coming off of a decent, albeit underwhelming year with the Padres and Royals. He kicked off the 2017 season with a 4-3 record in 11 starts for the Padres, then split his time between the rotation and bullpen after a midseason trade to the Royals. By the end of the year, the righty led the league with 16 wild pitches and had racked up a 4.93 ERA, 4.8 BB/9 and 9.3 SO/9 in 84 innings for the two teams.
The A’s found themselves in desperate need of rotation depth this week after Jharel Cotton announced he’d miss the 2018 season to undergo Tommy John surgery. Right now, the team is considering some combination of Andrew Triggs, Daniel Gossett, Daniel Mengden and Paul Blackburn for the back end of the rotation — a mix that seems unlikely to change in the last two weeks before Opening Day, as Lee points out that Cahill won’t be ready to shoulder a full workload by then. Instead, he’s expected to begin the year in the bullpen and work his way up to a starting role, where the A’s hope he’ll replicate the All-Star numbers he produced with them back in 2010.