Josh Hamilton wasn’t the only member of the Rangers playing through a painful injury.
Richard Durrett of ESPN Dallas, Mike Gonzalez has a torn meniscus in his left knee. He was pulled from the seventh inning of Game 7 last night due to the injury, which he originally suffered late in the season.
“We didn’t want to tell anybody so they wouldn’t try to bunt or anything,” Gonzalez said. “I just had to gut it out until the end.”
Gonzalez will undergo surgery on the knee next week, but expects to be ready for spring training. The impending free agent had a 4.15 ERA over eight postseason appearances and compiled a 4.39 ERA and 51/21 K/BB ratio over 53 1/3 innings during the regular season between Texas and Baltimore. The 33-year-old southpaw held left-handed batters to a cool .214/.264/.311 batting line. While he won’t receive a two-year, $12 million contract again, he certainly still has value in a set-up role.
Cardinals right-handed pitching prospect Griffin Roberts has been suspended 50 games following his second positive test for a drug of abuse, according to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Roberts, 22, is currently ranked the Cardinals’ tenth-best prospect by MLB Pipeline. He was selected in the first round of the 2018 draft and signed for a $1.66 million bonus, after which he split his first year in pro ball between the rookie-level GCL Cardinals and High-A Palm Beach Cardinals. He finished his run in 2018 with a combined seven runs, four walks, and 13 strikeouts in 9 2/3 innings across the two levels, and projects as a potential major-league starter (or solid righty reliever) after touching up his fastball-slider combo and proving he can command the ball on a consistent basis.
Whether he’ll emerge from A-level ball with a more concrete idea of his future role with the team will have to wait until he’s reinstated from the restricted list. He should be eligible to rejoin the Cardinals’ minor league affiliate sometime in mid- to late-May 2019.