According to MLB.com’s Alden Gonzalez, the Angels have “tendered a formal offer” to free agent right-hander Luis Ayala. Whether it’s a major league or minor league contract offer is not yet known.
Ayala is also drawing free agent interest from a “handful” of other teams, according to Gonzalez’s source, and is “still weighing his options.”
The 34-year-old right-hander posted a superb 2.09 ERA across 56 innings last year for the Yankees, holding opposing hitters to a .256/.336/.372 slash line and five home runs. He’s registered a solid 3.47 career ERA over seven major league seasons.
The Phillies announced that they’ve optioned right-hander Hector Neris to Triple-A Lehigh Valley.
Nerris, who saved 26 games as the Phillies closer in 2017 and ten games in that role this year, has struggled this year, posting a 6.00 ERA in 30 appearances. While his strikeout and walk rates aren’t too far off what he was doing last year his hit rate has spiked and he’s currently allowing 10.3 safeties per nine. The wheels have come off of late, as he has allowed nine runs on 15 hits — five of them homers — over his last eight innings of work. Yesterday he allowed four runs in the ninth inning of a game the Phillies had led by five.
It was clear that Gabe Kapler had lost faith in Neris as a result, using him almost exclusively in low-leverage situations. That changed on Saturday, as Kapler used him in a save situation and said after the game that they were easing him back into his role. That plan obviously changed after yesterday’s meltdown.
Seranthony Dominguez had been getting the call in save situations. He’ll get them more now.