Delmon Young looking for plea deal in hate crime case

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With the Tigers having today off Delmon Young traveled to New York to appear in a Manhattan courtroom for what the Associated Press calls “an update” on his misdemeanor hate crime case.

While in town to play the Yankees in April he was arrested and charged with yelling anti-Semitic epithets at a group of tourists and shoving one person to the ground.

Young’s lawyer is now seeking a plea agreement “that’s acceptable to both parties” and would avoid a trial. For now he’s scheduled back in New York court on November 7, which is after the playoffs are over.

Young, who was suspended for a week following the incident, has struggled this season with a .266 batting average, .297 on-base percentage, and .404 slugging percentage in 96 games, posting a terrible 69/14 K/BB ratio at age 26.

Blue Jays release John Axford

John Axford
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The Blue Jays have released right-handed reliever John Axford from his minor league contract, per an announcement on Saturday. Sportsnet’s Shi Davidi speculates that the move could provide an avenue for the club to rework Axford’s contract, but the Blue Jays have yet to confirm or deny the report.

Axford, 35, was dealt a blow on Thursday after getting diagnosed with a stress reaction in the olecranon bone of his right elbow. Elbow soreness dogged the right-hander through much of his time in camp, and although he was scheduled for a follow-up examination later this spring, a definite return date had not been established.

Prior to the diagnosis, Axford was tabbed for a setup role with the team in 2019. He pitched to mixed results in 2018 (thanks in part to a late-season fracture of his right fibula) with a 5.27 ERA, 4.9 BB/9, and 9.8 SO/9 through 54 2/3 innings with the Blue Jays and Dodgers. Now, however, it’s not certain that he’ll return to the mound this season in any capacity.

Axford isn’t the only reliever the Blue Jays have lost to injury lately, either, as right-handers Ryan Tepera and Bud Norris have been sidelined with right elbow inflammation and forearm fatigue, respectively. Per Davidi, the Blue Jays offered Norris a $100,000 retention bonus to prevent him from opting out of the minor league contract he signed in February.