Jason Bartlett suffered a mild strain of his right hamstring last Saturday in a game against the White Sox. He was hoping to sit out a few days and rejoin the Rays’ lineup at some point this week. Unfortunately the 30-year-old shortstop was unable to shake the discomfort and was placed on the disabled list Thursday evening, according to the Tampa Tribune.
Bartlett was off to a rather disappointing start this year before suffering the injury. Through 48 games he has a .231 batting average, a .327 on-base percentage and only one home run. Reid Brignac, who has played well in a limited role, is likely to see the majority of starts at shortstop for the Rays over the next two weeks.
Catcher Kelly Shoppach will be activated from his own stint on the 15-day disabled list Friday in a corresponding move.
It was announced earlier this month that 53-year-old Rafael Palmeiro signed a contract with the Cleburne Railroaders of the independent American Association, joining his son, former minor leaguer Patrick Palmeiro. The four-time All-Star went 0-for-8 to begin his stint with the club before launching a solo homer in the fifth inning last night. Check it out below.
If we’re being technical here, that was his first home run since July 30, 2005. He hit the homer off 28-year-old Trey McNutt, former prospect with the Cubs and Padres. Palmeiro made his major league debut in 1986, three years before McNutt was born.
Palmeiro told Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic last December that he was thinking about a comeback, but he understandably didn’t garner any serious consideration from MLB teams. This comeback attempt might not lead anywhere, but hey, he gets to show that he can still mash while hitting in the same lineup with his son. Palmeiro did that once before with the independent Sugar Land Skeeters in 2015, though it was just a one-game thing. As for the Railroaders, the national media attention can only help them.
Palmeiro is one of just six players in MLB history to reach 3,000 hits and 500 home runs, but he’s been a disgraced figure in the game since a failed drug test for performance-enhancing drugs in 2005. He dropped off the Hall of Fame ballot in 2014.