Ryan Sweeney is the latest Red Sox outfielder to hit the disabled list, joining Carl Crawford, Jacoby Ellsbury, Cody Ross, and Jason Repko on the shelf after initially playing through a foot injury.
Ian Browne of MLB.com reports that Sweeney has an “irritation in the sesamoid bone in his left foot” and rather than letting him continue to play at less than full strength the Red Sox shut him down and recalled Ryan Kalish from Triple-A.
Bobby Valentine called Sweeney “a trooper” and credited him for a willingness to play hurt in an outfield decimated by injuries, but he recently needed a cortisone shot and was in the midst of a 5-for-31 (.161) slump.
Acquired from the A’s in the Andrew Bailey-for-Josh Reddick swap, Sweeney hit .292 with zero homers, 17 doubles, and a .733 OPS in 52 games and lately had been filling in as a center fielder.
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.