Emilio Bonifacio expects to rejoin the Marlins in a week

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From beat writer Joe Capozzi of the Palm Beach Post comes word that Marlins second baseman Emilio Bonifacio is scheduled to begin a minor league rehab assignment Wednesday night with the High-A Jupiter Hammerheads and could be back in the major leagues next Sunday if all goes well.

Bonifacio has been on the 15-day disabled list since the first week of August with a sprained left thumb.

The 27-year-old was batting .261/.335/.321 with one home run and 30 steals in 264 plate appearances.

Miami enters play this afternoon with a 52-62 record — 19 games back of the Nationals in the NL East.

Rakuten Golden Eagles sign Jabari Blash

Jabari Blash
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Former Angels outfielder Jabari Blash has signed a one-year deal with the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles of Nippon Professional Baseball, the team announced Friday. Per the Japan Times, the deal is said to be worth around $1.06 million. Blash was released from his contract with the Angels at the end of November.

The 29-year-old outfielder has had a rough go of it in the majors, where he failed to duplicate the promising results he delivered in the minors. While he consistently batted above .250 with 20-30 home runs per season at the Double- and Triple-A level, he petered out in back-to-back gigs with the Padres and Angels and slumped toward a .103/.200/.128 finish across 45 PA for Anaheim in 2018.

The hope, of course, is that the environment in NPB will help him get a better handle on his issues at the plate — in a best case scenario, resulting in a full-scale transformation that could make him more marketable to MLB teams in the future. To that end, Blash expects to be utilized as a cleanup batter in the Eagles’ lineup and will focus on assisting the club as they make a run toward the Japan Series.