In a surprising move, the Diamondbacks designated infielder Cody Ransom for assignment on Monday and replaced him with youngster Josh Bell.
Ransom, 36, is pretty much the ultimate journeyman infielder, but he did a great job at the plate in his time for Arizona, hitting .269/.345/.577 with four homers and 13 RBI in 52 at-bats. Of course, he had cooled off recently, going 1-for-15 over the last 13 days.
Bell had been red-hot in Triple-A since being picked up from the Orioles, hitting .381/.429/.619 in 97 at-bats, so it’s not surprising that the Diamondbacks wanted to give him a look. Still, it just doesn’t seem fair that they jettisoned Ransom to do it. Besides Chris Young, Ransom had the highest OPS of anyone on the team.
Ransom’s hot streak and major league-minimum salary should get him a look elsewhere now that Arizona is done with him. Just in the NL West alone, the Dodgers, Giants and Padres could all use infield help.
Matt Breen of the Philadelphia Inquirer reports that Nick Pivetta will rejoin the Phillies’ rotation, starting Tuesday’s series opener at home against the Cardinals. Vince Velasquez will remain in the bullpen.
Pivetta, 26, allowed 17 earned runs on 31 hits and eight walks with 16 strikeouts in 18 1/3 innings across his first four starts of the season. The performance resulted in a demotion to Triple-A Lehigh Valley. In six starts there, Pivetta had a much better 3.41 ERA with a 50/20 K/BB ratio in 37 innings of work.
Velasquez, 26, was solid as a starter, posting a 3.99 ERA across six starts. However, he averaged under five innings and 92 pitches per start. The right-hander tossed two scoreless innings out of the bullpen on Friday against the Brewers but was torched for four runs in two-thirds of an inning on Sunday. Mixed results, to say the least. The Phillies are trying to do what they can with their bullpen, currently missing David Robertson, Tommy Hunter, Pat Neshek, and Vìctor Arano.