Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic is reporting that the Diamondbacks have signed veteran left-hander Mike Hampton to a minor league contract.
Hampton hasn’t pitched in a minor league game since August of 2009 and is coming off major shoulder surgery. To expect anything from him, then, would be crazy, but it’s a nice low-risk move for the Diamondbacks, who have seen a lack of consistency from their bullpen and starting rotation this season.
The 37-year-old southpaw posted a 5.30 ERA and a 1.55 WHIP in 21 starts last year for the Astros. He could make it to the majors in September if he pitches well for the next few weeks at the Diamondbacks’ Triple-A affiliate in Reno, Nevada.
Cardinals right-handed pitching prospect Griffin Roberts has been suspended 50 games following his second positive test for a drug of abuse, according to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Roberts, 22, is currently ranked the Cardinals’ tenth-best prospect by MLB Pipeline. He was selected in the first round of the 2018 draft and signed for a $1.66 million bonus, after which he split his first year in pro ball between the rookie-level GCL Cardinals and High-A Palm Beach Cardinals. He finished his run in 2018 with a combined seven runs, four walks, and 13 strikeouts in 9 2/3 innings across the two levels, and projects as a potential major-league starter (or solid righty reliever) after touching up his fastball-slider combo and proving he can command the ball on a consistent basis.
Whether he’ll emerge from A-level ball with a more concrete idea of his future role with the team will have to wait until he’s reinstated from the restricted list. He should be eligible to rejoin the Cardinals’ minor league affiliate sometime in mid- to late-May 2019.