Geoff Blum pulled a muscle in his side while taking batting practice yesterday, so the Diamondbacks have placed the 39-year-old on the disabled list while calling up 2009 first-round pick A.J. Pollock to take his roster spot.
Blum received just 14 total plate appearances through 10 games and the presence of Willie Bloomquist and John McDonald means the Diamondbacks remain well-stocked with light-hitting veteran utility men.
Pollock’s prospect stock has dropped since he went 17th overall in 2009, but the 24-year-old center fielder was off to a strong start at Triple-A after hitting .307 with minimal power and 36 steals at Double-A last season. Center fielder Chris Young and right fielder Justin Upton are both hurting, so he could see some regular action.
Phil Hughes was officially designated for assignment by the Twins on Tuesday, the culmination of multiple injury-plagued seasons and poor performance.
Things couldn’t have started out much better for Hughes in Minnesota. The former Yankees hurler joined the Twins on a three-year, $24 million contract in December of 2013 and reeled off a 3.52 ERA over 32 starts during his first season with the club. He set the MLB record (which still stands, by the way) for single season strikeout-to-walk ratio and even received some downballot Cy Young Award consideration. The big year resulted in the two sides ripping up their previous agreement with a new five-year, $58 million deal, but it was all downhill after that.
Hughes took a step back with a 4.40 ERA in 2015 and struggled with a 5.95 ERA over 11 starts and one relief appearance in 2016 before undergoing surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome. He wasn’t any better upon his return last year, putting up a 5.87 ERA in nine starts and five relief appearances. Hughes missed time with a biceps issue and required a thoracic outlet revision surgery in August. He began this year on the disabled list with an oblique injury, only to put up a 6.75 ERA over two starts and five relief appearances before the Twins decided to turn the page this week.
Hughes is still owed the remainder of his $13.2 million salary for this year and another $13.2 million next year. The deal didn’t work out as anyone would have hoped, but unfortunately this is another case of health just not cooperating.