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.
Rangers GM Jon Daniels said he doesn’t expect the club to make a $17.9 million qualifying offer to free agent third baseman Adrián Beltré, MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan reports. Daniels has been in touch with the 39-year-old, who may retire.
Beltré battled hip and hamstring issues throughout the past season, limiting him to 119 games. He hit .273/.328/.434 with 15 home runs and 65 RBI in 481 plate appearances. Going by adjusted OPS, his mark of 98 — 100 is average — was his lowest in a season since 2009 with the Mariners. Beltré’s career average is 116 and he put up a 132 in 2017 and 128 in ’16.
Beltré appears to have some stuff left in the tank. He may not be an All-Star-caliber player anymore, but he can still hit at an average level and he is still an above-average defender. It’s just a matter of his body holding up to allow him to do what he needs to do. If Beltré does decide to re-up with the Rangers for 2019, the club will be prepared to move Isiah Kiner-Falefa or Jurickson Profar over to the hot corner as they did in 2018 in the event Beltré gets bitten by the injury bug.