The Royals own the best record in the American League at 73-46. And they are about to get even stronger.
According to Andy McCullough of the Kansas City Star, Royals manager Ned Yost said this afternoon that Alex Gordon will begin a minor league rehab assignment Sunday with Triple-A Omaha.
Gordon has been sidelined since July 8 with a Grade 2 strain of his left groin. There’s no clear timetable in regard to how many rehab games he’ll need, but it’s reasonable to expect him to return around when rosters expand on September 1.
Gordon was having one of his best seasons at the plate prior to the injury, batting .279/.394/.457 with 11 home runs and 39 RBI over 78 games. Ben Zobrist has seen some playing time in left field since coming over from the Athletics at the trade deadline, but he figures to be the regular second baseman down the stretch.
In need of a starter with Anibal Sanchez and Daniel Norris going on the disabled list today, the Tigers have acquired Randy Wolf from the Blue Jays for cash considerations. The veteran left-hander will start against the Rangers on Saturday, which is also his 39th birthday.
After making six appearances (four starts) with the Marlins last season, Wolf has pitched exclusively in the minors this season while putting up a 2.58 ERA and 106/40 K/BB ratio in 139 2/3 innings over 23 starts with Triple-A Buffalo. With no clear opening on the major league roster, he requested his release earlier this week. Things ended up working out pretty well for him.
The Tigers will be Wolf’s eight major league team. As Jason Beck of MLB.com notes, Tigers managers Brad Ausmus previously caught Wolf in three starts from 2008-2009 when they were teammates with the Astros and Dodgers. The dynamic will be a little different this time around.
David Wright’s status has been in doubt for most of the season due to spinal stenosis in his lower back, but he’s getting closer to finally rejoining the Mets.
According to Adam Rubin of ESPN New York, the Mets are planning on activating Wright next Monday for the first game of a four-game series against the Phillies. That’s assuming no setbacks, of course.
Wright, who has been sidelined since April 14, began a minor league rehab assignment with High-A St. Lucie a week ago and is batting .286 (4-for-14) with two walks over his first four games. The veteran third baseman is currently getting a two-day break while the team is on the road, but he’s expected to return to action tomorrow. There was some hope that he would be activated this weekend, but the Mets are playing things safe.
Juan Uribe and Daniel Murphy have received most of the playing time at third base this month. Wright likely can’t be counted on to be a full-time player upon his return, so Mets manager Terry Collins figures to do lots of mixing and matching as the team attempts to finish off their first division title since 2006.