Last week Jerome Williams was hospitalized for shortness of breath after passing out in the clubhouse following his start against the Giants, but the Angels right-hander felt good enough to throw a bullpen session over the weekend.
Williams is on the disabled list, so he won’t be rushed back, but Mark Saxon of ESPN Los Angeles reports that he’s experienced no further problems since the incident and is slated to pitch a simulated game later this week.
He’s eligible to return from the DL on July 4, but with rookie Garrett Richards pitching well Williams’ rotation spot may not be guaranteed.
The Tigers signed catcher Josh Thole to a minor league deal, per an announcement from the Double-A Erie SeaWolves on Friday. Thole is expected to report to Double-A Erie, where he’ll split time with starting catcher Jake Rogers.
Thole, 31, has not appeared in a major or minor league game since 2016. He signed a minors deal with the Diamondbacks back in 2017, but was sidelined through most of the season after undergoing hamstring surgery in April. He was released by the team during spring training and failed to catch on with another major league club through the first two months of the 2018 season.
While the veteran backstop hasn’t tested his skills in pro ball for several years now, he held his own during a short-lived run with the independent New Britain Bees of the Atlantic League. Over 17 games in 2018, Thole batted .317/.425/.367 with three extra-base hits and a .791 OPS in 75 plate appearances. He’s expected to serve as catching depth within the Tigers’ organization, but may yet work his way back to the majors if he can get his average back over the Mendoza Line again — a feat he hasn’t managed since 2015.