Rickie Weeks could be activated from the disabled list this weekend

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According to Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said this afternoon that Rickie Weeks might be activated from the disabled list during a series against the Phillies this weekend.

But he won’t return to the starting lineup right away. The plan is for Weeks to be eased back into action via pinch-hit appearances and short stints in the field.

“We wouldn’t be activating him to play second base a lot. We would ease him in. We haven’t gotten there yet.”

Weeks hasn’t played since July 27 due to a severely sprained left ankle. The All-Star second baseman has yet to run the bases, but Roenicke said that he had “a really good day” during a workout Monday, showing less hesitation before starting to run a straight line in the outfield. The main goal is to have Weeks ready for the postseason, so with the benefit of a huge lead in the National League Central, the Brewers can afford to take it slow.

Weeks, who turns 29 next week, was batting .272/.346/.478 with 19 homers, 43 RBI, nine stolen bases and an .825 OPS over 469 plate appearances prior to the injury.

Diamondbacks, T.J. McFarland avoid arbitration

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Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that the Diamondbacks and reliever T.J. McFarland have avoided arbitration, agreeing on a $1.45 million salary for the 2019 season. McFarland, in his third of four years of arbitration eligibility, filed for $1.675 million while the Diamondbacks countered at $1.275 million. McFarland ended up settling for just under the midpoint of those two figures.

McFarland, 29, was terrific out of the bullpen for the D-Backs last season, finishing with a 2.00 ERA and a 42/22 K/BB ratio in 72 innings. While the lefty may not miss a lot of bats, he does induce quite a few grounders. His 67.9 percent ground ball rate last season was the third highest among relievers with at least 50 innings, trailing only Brad Ziegler (71.1%) and Scott Alexander (70.6%).

McFarland was dominant against left-handed hitters, limiting them to a .388 OPS last season, but the D-Backs deployed him nearly twice as often against right-handed hitters, who posted an aggregate .764 OPS against him. It will be interesting to see if the club decides to use him more as a platoon reliever in 2019.