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

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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.

Report: Welington Castillo to be suspended 80 games for violating Joint Drug Agreement

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Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic confirms a report from journalist Américo Celado that White Sox catcher Welington Castillo will be suspended 80 games for violating baseball’s Joint Drug Agreement. Castillo was believed to have used a steroid, but according to Rosenthal, the substance was not a steroid. More details should come on Thursday.

Castillo, 31, entered Wednesday’s action batting .270/.314/.477 with six home runs and 15 RBI in 118 plate appearances. He has gotten the bulk of the work behind the plate, backed up by Omar Narváez.

Castillo’s absence will likely prompt the White Sox to call up Kevan Smith from Triple-A Charlotte. Smith battled an ankle injury in March and April, so he got a late start to the season. In 102 PA at Triple-A, he has hit .283/.343/.457.