Out since a hit by pitch late in spring training left him with a fractured hand, Clint Barmes will be activated from the disabled list and make his Astros debut tonight.
Barmes, who was acquired from the Rockies in November to take over as the Astros’ starting shortstop, returns from the injury in five weeks after initially being given a 4-6 week recovery timetable.
He’s been a plus defender at second base and shortstop for the Rockies, but Barmes is likely to disappoint offensively now that he’s no longer calling Coors Field home. His overall numbers have never been particularly impressive, but Barmes has been downright terrible on the road throughout his career, hitting just .224 with a .266 on-base percentage and .352 slugging percentage in 1,264 plate appearances.
To make room for Barmes on the roster the Astros designated veteran utility man Joe Inglett for assignment.
Jon Heyman has been hot on the free agent trail today, reporting that the Padres have made offers both Manny Machado and Bryce Harper. The offer to Machado is believed to be for eight years and about $250 million, while the offer to Harper is believed to be for more than that.
Heyman was reporting on Harper earlier, tweeting that the Phillies are the favorite to sign him. He added this evening that Harper has multiple long-term offers at more than $30 million annually. Regarding Machado, Heyman noted that while Machado was believed to have had a preference for the East coast, he will go for the best deal now, which puts the Padres firmly in the picture.
The Padres reportedly met with Machado last week. A late entrant into the sweepstakes, the club has shown the willingness to spend, signing Eric Hosmer to an eight-year, $144 million contract last year. If he goes to San Diego, Machado would be the full-time third baseman with Luis Urias handling shortstop.
Nothing appears close, but we’ll take anything resembling a spark to light the hot stove.