Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays are expected to designate catcher Jose Molina for assignment ahead of the 40-man roster deadline, which is at midnight.
The Rays owe Molina $2.75 million for the 2015 season, but they obviously feel they can do better. The 39-year-old batted just .178/.230/.187 over 247 plate appearances this past season, his third consecutive season in which his offensive production declined precipitously.
The Rays have 10 days to work out a trade with another team involving Molina, which would absolve them of some or all of the money they owe him.
Tampa Bay activated Ryan Hanigan from the disabled list after the veteran catcher missed six weeks with a strained oblique muscle.
Hanigan suffered the injury before the All-Star break and initially tried to avoid the disabled list, which now seems kind of silly considering he missed more than a month of action.
Acquired from the Reds this offseason after posting a .360 on-base percentage through his first seven seasons in the majors, Hanigan hit just .212 with a .309 on-base percentage in 61 games before the injury.
He’ll likely split time with Jose Molina down the stretch.
Ryan Hanigan’s strained oblique muscle didn’t get any better during the All-Star break, so the Rays have placed the catcher on the disabled list retroactive to July 9.
Tampa Bay acquired Hanigan from Cincinnati in December and quickly signed him to a contract extension, valuing his combination of pitch-framing and a .360 career on-base percentage. However, he’s hit just .212 with a .309 on-base percentage in 61 games for the Rays, who’ll now use Jose Molina again as their primary catcher.