UPDATE: This one’s done, according to Dan Hayes of the North County Times. Despite reports of a “twist,” the only hold-up now is a routine physical for all three involved players.
WEDNESDAY: From MLB.com’s Corey Brock comes word that the Padres have landed shortstop Jason Bartlett from the Rays in exchange for two relievers — Cesar Ramos and Adam Russell.
The Rays are prepared to go with the slick-fielding Reid Brignac at shortstop next season and dealt from their surplus of middle infielders in order to tidy up a bullpen that had been ravaged by free agent departures.
Bartlett, 31, posted a poor .254/.324/.350 batting line this past season and probably won’t make much of an improvement while playing half of his games at the massive PETCO Park. But he’s an upgrade over what the Padres trotted out in 2010 and he did register an 879 OPS in 2009 — just one year ago.
Ramos, 26, posted a 3.28 ERA and 1.39 WHIP in 96 innings this year at Triple-A. He has some starting experience but will almost certainly be used as a reliever in Tampa. Russell, 27, registered a 1.21 WHIP over 12 relief appearances in 2010.
Major League Baseball just announced that it has approved a roster substitution for the Milwaukee Brewers due to the ankle injury sustained by Gio Gonzalez: right-handed pitcher Zach Davies will take his place. In accordance with league rules, Gonzalez will be ineligible to return if the Brewers make it to the World Series.
That rule is designed to prevent roster gamesmanship such as having a pitcher fake an injury after he’s done being used in an effort to give a team a fresh arm in a short series. A second layer on that is an independent consult with the league, which may approve or disapprove the request based on the specific facts and circumstances of the case. In this case, Dr. Gary Green, MLB’s Medical Director, confirmed Gonzalez’s injury after communicating with the Brewers’ evaluating physician. Not that anyone can really suggest that Gonzalez was faking. The dude’s ankle went sideways.
That being said, this is a benefit to the Brewers at least for the short term. Davies did not have a fantastic season, going 2-7 with a 4.77 ERA in 13 starts and failing to make the Brewers’ initial postseason roster, but he is fresh — he hasn’t pitched since September 28 — which could prove very useful for Craig Counsell and the Brewers after last night’s 13-inning game.