Brandon McCarthy remains in the hospital after being hit in the head by a line drive Wednesday and the A’s have recalled right-hander Dan Straily from Triple-A to presumably take his spot in the rotation.
Straily made his big-league debut back on August 3 and pitched well in three starts, throwing 17 innings with a 3.18 ERA and 12/4 K/BB ratio, but Brett Anderson’s return from Tommy John surgery and Oakland’s strong rotation depth pushed him back to the minors.
Now he returns after posting a 2.78 ERA and ridiculously great 190/48 K/BB ratio in 152 innings between Double-A and Triple-A. Straily was far from a top prospect coming into this season, but had one of the bigger breakouts of anyone in the minors this year.
Robert Murray and MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reported earlier, respectively, that the Phillies signed pitcher Francisco Liriano and infielder Neil Walker to minor league contracts. If he makes the major league roster, Liriano will earn a salary of $1.5 million with an additional $1.25 million available through performance incentives. Walker’s contract information is not yet known.
Liriano, 36, struggled from 2016-18 but enjoyed a productive year out of the bullpen for the Pirates this past season. He posted a 3.47 ERA with 63 strikeouts and 35 walks over 70 innings. The lefty was quite effective against same-handed batters, limiting fellow lefties to a .659 OPS. That would figure to be a key component if Liriano makes the Phillies’ Opening Day roster.
Walker, 34, hit .261/.344/.395 with eight home runs and 38 RBI over 381 plate appearances with the Marlins last year. The veteran is versastile, having played first, second, and third base along with both corner outfield spots in recent seasons. Despite Walker’s versatility, it is tough to see room on the Phillies’ roster for him, barring injuries to other players. It never hurts to have depth.