Aaron Gleeman

Angels acquire outfielder Kirk Nieuwenhuis from Mets


Adam Rubin of ESPN New York reports that the Mets have traded outfielder Kirk Nieuwenhuis to the Angels for cash considerations after designating him for assignment

Several reports last week had the Angels in the market for outfield help. Nieuwenhuis isn’t going to make a big impact, but he can play all three outfield spot and has produced decent numbers offensively in the minors.

As a big leaguer he’s hit just .230 with 13 homers and a .676 OPS in 226 games, so expect the 27-year-old Nieuwenhuis to fill a reserve role.

Matt Wieters begins rehab assignment with two hits


Orioles catcher Matt Wieters began a minor-league rehab assignment Tuesday at Double-A, going 2-for-4 while catching all nine innings in his comeback from Tommy John elbow surgery.

Wieters and the Orioles are targeting a June 4 return date because that’s when he’s eligible to come off the 60-day disabled list and Rich Dubroff of CSNBaltimore.com reports that he’s expected to start at catcher every other day while also seeing action at designated hitter.

He’s about 11 months removed from the surgery, but Wieters experienced a setback during spring training that delayed his return timetable.

Caleb Joseph has done a very good job filling in for Wieters as the Orioles’ primary catcher, hitting .274 with four homers and an .809 OPS in 35 games.

Cubs release left-hander Phil Coke


Chris Cotillo of SBNation reports that the Cubs have released reliever Phil Coke after designating him for assignment last week.

Coke signed a one-year, $2.25 million deal with the Cubs this offseason and quickly pitched his way out of their bullpen plans by allowing seven runs in 10 innings despite good secondary numbers.

Coke has always been very good against lefties and very bad against righties, yet for some reason his managers usually talk themselves into trusting him in more than just a southpaw specialist role and it goes poorly. Expect him to be back in the majors with another team soon.