Author: Mike Florio

Reds place Mike Leake on disabled list with fatigued shoulder

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Earlier this week the Reds hinted about possibly shutting Mike Leake down for the season and this afternoon they placed the 22-year-old rookie on the disabled list with a “fatigued right shoulder.”
Leake has already thrown 138.1 innings this season after skipping the minors to join the Opening Day rotation, so the Reds moved him to the bullpen last week in an effort to limit his workload. Leake struggled in two relief outings, including giving up six runs while recording one out Tuesday.
Since going 5-0 with a 2.22 ERA through his first 11 starts Leake has allowed 55 runs in 66 innings, during which time opponents have hit .336 with a .560 slugging percentage. Toss in the Reds’ sudden logjam of capable starters and giving him a break was a pretty easy call.
It’ll be interesting to see if they give him a shot to contribute at some point next month or if the Reds no longer have Leake in their playoff plans.

Brad Hawpe will go to Single-A for now after signing minor league deal with Rays


Brad Hawpe’s deal with the Rays is official. He signs a minor-league contract after being released by the Rockies earlier this month and will report to Single-A for now.
Hawpe hasn’t played since August 18, so the Rays will give him some at-bats in the minors and then likely call him up before rosters expand Wednesday, making him eligible for the postseason roster.
Hawpe’s performance in Colorado was sub par for his standards this year, but .255/.343/.432 is still reasonable production and he posted an OPS above .875 in each of the previous four seasons. He’s also a career .274/.369/.470 hitter with an average of 24 homers per 550 at-bats away from Coors Field, so as a part-time designated hitter who can give the Rays another solid left-handed bat against right-handed pitching Hawpe is a very worthwhile pickup
Plus, because the Rockies are footing the bill for his $7.5 million salary and $500,000 buyout for 2011 the Rays are on the hook for merely a prorated share of the minimum salary.

Poll: Are the Nationals to blame for Strasburg's injury?


I tend to think the answer is a pretty obvious “no” here.
After all, Stephen Strasburg averaged just 77 pitches per start in the minors and 92 pitches per start in the majors, never cracking even 100 pitches for the Nationals. If anything, his only big workloads came in college at San Diego State, where he regularly threw more pitches than the Nationals would have been comfortable with. Sometimes, pitchers just get hurt.
What say you?

Instead of September call-up, ex-A's prospect Grant Desme enters seminary


A’s outfield prospect Grant Desme retired from baseball in January to enter the priesthood and the 24-year-old former second-round pick officially begins his time at a seminary in California today.
Had he not given up baseball before the season Desme would probably be in line for a call-up when rosters expand on September 1. After all, he hit .288/.365/.568 with 31 homers and 40 steals in 131 games between high Single-A and Double-A last season and was also named MVP of the Arizona Fall League.
Instead he’ll be at St. Michael’s Abbey in Orange Country, where he’ll live as a monk as a part of a 70-person community. The whole process of becoming a priest takes 10 years, but Desme said back in April that he regretted nothing about his decision and “didn’t even realize it was Opening Day.”

Jhonny Peralta hopes the Tigers pick up his $7 million option for next season


Traded from Cleveland to Detroit last month, Jhonny Peralta said yesterday that he’d like to remain with the Tigers next season:

I want to be here. I hope they pick up the option. But I want to be here. I like everybody here.

That comes as no surprise, because “the option” is for $7 million and that’s likely significantly more than Peralta would fetch for next season on the open market.
Peralta has shifted back to shortstop for the Tigers after playing primarily third base for the Indians, but few teams are likely to view him as a legitimate option defensively at shortstop and his .244/.310/.405 hitting line in 116 total games this season is hardly good production from a third baseman. And he was even worse last year, hitting a career-low .254/.316/.375 in 151 games.
If the Tigers want him back for 2011 they can certainly accomplish that for less than $7 million, although it’s possible they could decide to pick up the option just to avoid being pressured into a multi-year commitment.