After surprisingly being designated for assignment by the Padres last week, prospect outfielder Rymer Liriano has a new home. The Brewers just announced that they have acquired Liriano from San Diego in exchange for minor league reliever Trevor Seidenberger.
Once a top-50 prospect, Liriano appeared in 38 games with the Padres in 2014, but he spent all of last season at the Triple-A level and batted .292/.383/.460 with 14 home runs, 64 RBI, and 18 stolen bases over 131 games. It was a head-scratcher to see San Diego give up on him, especially when they have their own outfield issues, but it makes sense to see a rebuilding team like the Brewers take advantage. Liriano is still just 24 years old.
The Brewers already have Ryan Braun in right field and Khris Davis in left, so Liriano’s best chance to contribute is in center field. He has extensive experience there in the minors, though many have viewed him as more of a corner outfielder in the long-term. Domingo Santana, who was acquired from the Astros in the Carlos Gomez/Mike Fiers deal last July, is also in the mix for center field along with names like Keon Broxton and Kirk Nieuwenhuis. It’s worth noting that Liriano is out of options going into this spring, so the Brewers would have to carry him on their active roster to begin the season or risk exposing him to waivers.
Seidenberger, a 23-year-old left-hander, had a 4.07 ERA and 48/26 K/BB ratio over 48 2/3 innings between High-A and Double-A last season.
Terrible news coming out of the Dominican Republic, as the Astros announced Monday that minor league right-hander Jose Rosario died Sunday night in a motorcycle accident. He was just 20 years old.
Rosario was signed by the Astros in December of 2013. He split last season between the Dominican Summer League and the Gulf Coast League, posting a 4.40 ERA and 51/22 K/BB ratio over 57 1/3 innings.
Below is a statement from the Astros international director Oz Ocampo:
“Jose was a beloved member of the Astros Latin American program. He will be remembered as a long, lanky-framed pitcher with tremendous ability, an outgoing personality and an ever-positive disposition. He was a true student of the game and was constantly looking to learn and improve his abilities. He was also a supportive teammate, as he made it a point to encourage his fellow Astros and deliver that message with a smile on his face. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Rosario family.”
Our condolences to Rosario’s friends and family and the Astros organization.
There’s plenty of intrigue in the Rockies’ outfield at the moment, but Charlie Blackmon‘s contractual status for 2016 isn’t part of it, as Thomas Harding of MLB.com reports that the two sides have avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $3.5 million deal.
The deal is just a shade over the midpoint, as the first-time arbitration-eligible Blackmon requested $3.9 million and was offered $2.7 million by the Rockies when figures were exchanged earlier this month. The 29-year-old certainly earned the payday, as he followed up a breakout 2014 by batting .287/.347/.450 with 17 home runs, 58 RBI, and 43 stolen bases over 157 games last season.
The Rockies recently signed Gerardo Parra to a three-year contract and Blackmon admitted over the weekend that he was initially “a little perplexed” by the move. With Carlos Gonzalez and Corey Dickerson also in the mix, a trade could come be coming.
Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak created quite a bit of a chatter last weekend when he said that there has been “more momentum” in discussions with other general managers and owners for the designated hitter to come to the National League. That “momentum” might have been overstated.
In an interview with Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred indicated that a change isn’t likely to come anytime soon.
“The most likely result on the designated hitter for the foreseeable future is the status quo,” Manfred said in an interview with ESPN.com in conjunction with his one-year anniversary as commissioner. “I think the vast majority of clubs in the National League want to stay where they are.”
Most can agree that pitchers batting is generally a bad thing — Yeah, yeah, Bartolo Colon — but Manfred has the same feeling as a sizable group of National League fans, namely that the designated hitter is “the single most important feature that defines the differences between the two leagues.” It’s easy to understand that sentiment, but one wonders if part of the resistance on the part of owners is that they don’t want to pay the hitters who could benefit from a potential change.
The current collective bargaining agreement expires after this season, so the thought was that the universal designated hitter could become a thing as soon as 2017. Barring something unexpected, those clinging to tradition can rest easy for now.
The Phillies announced this afternoon that they signed outfielder David Lough to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.
With his ability to play all three outfield positions, Lough has been a useful bench piece in the past, but he batted just .201/.241/.313 with four home runs and 12 RBI over 144 plate appearances with the Orioles last season. The 30-year-old was non-tendered by Baltimore in December.
While there’s opportunity with the rebuilding Phillies, it could be a challenge for Lough to make the Opening Day roster. As things stand right now, Odubel Herrera, Peter Bourjos, Aaron Altherr, Cody Asche are ahead of him on the depth chart and the club could be compelled to keep Rule 5 pick Tyler Goeddel.