Blue Jays starter Aaron Sanchez is replacing Red Sox reliever Craig Kimbrel on the American League All-Star roster, the club announced on Saturday. Kimbrel has a torn meniscus in his right knee and is expected to miss three to six weeks.
Sanchez, 24, has had a terrific season, currently standing at 9-1 with a 2.97 ERA and a 103/37 K/BB ratio in 118 1/3 innings. He served as a swing man for the Jays last year, making 11 starts and 30 relief appearances.
Kimbrel, 28, has 17 saves in 19 opportunities with a 3.55 ERA and a 50/15 K/BB ratio in 33 innings. His ERA ballooned by more than a full run after yielding four runs without recording an out last Tuesday against the Rangers.
White Sox starter Jose Quintana has been added to the American League All-Star roster, the team announced on Sunday. It’s Quintana’s first career selection to the All-Star roster.
Danny Salazar, who pitched on Saturday, abdicated his spot to Quintana due to a sore right elbow, as Paul Hoynes of Cleveland.com reports. Salazar is still expected to make his scheduled start on Tuesday, July 19 after the All-Star break.
Quintana is 7-8 with a 3.21 ERA and a 105/28 K/BB ratio in 117 2/3 innings. He has held the opposition to two or fewer runs in 11 of his 18 starts.
It’s nice to see Quintana make it to the All-Star Game, as he’s been an underrated starter since coming into the league in 2012. He has a career 3.43 ERA, but due to bad luck and scant run support, he owns an unimpressive 40-42 record and has finished a season with a record above .500 just once, in 2013 (9-7).
The Red Sox announced early Saturday morning that the club acquired reliever Brad Ziegler from the Diamondbacks for minor league pitcher Jose Almonte and middle infielder Luis Alejandro Basabe. To make room for Ziegler on the 40-man roster, the club moved catcher/outfielder Blake Swihart to the 60-day disabled list.
Ziegler, 36, did not pitch on Friday night against the Giants. He has saved 18 games in 20 chances with a 2.82 ERA and a 27/15 K/BB ratio in 38 1/3 innings. Strikeouts aren’t really his thing, as his 16.4 percent strikeout rate is the 14th-lowest among qualified relievers. Ziegler succeeds by inducing ground balls. His 63 percent ground ball rate is the seventh highest among qualified relievers.
Ziegler will likely set up for Craig Kimbrel in the Red Sox bullpen. Kimbrel, however, was not available on Friday due to soreness in his left knee. In the event Kimbrel would need to go on the disabled list, Ziegler could get the chance to close over Koji Uehara, who has been the club’s closer in recent years but owns an ugly 4.83 ERA this season.
Almonte, 20, has spent the season with Single-A Greenville, compiling a 3.91 ERA and a 45/13 K/BB ratio in 53 innings.
Basabe, 19, has also spent year with Greenville, batting .311/.414/.471 with four home runs, 24 RBI, 39 runs scored, and 14 stolen bases in 271 plate appearances. Luis Alejandro Basabe has a twin brother in the Red Sox system, Luis Alexander. Alexander was rated the club’s eighth-best prospect by MLB Pipeline. Alejandro was not ranked.