Predictably none of the other 29 teams wanted anything to do with Kevin Gregg’s remaining contract, even for just a few weeks of salary, so the Orioles released the veteran reliever after designating him for assignment Tuesday.
Gregg produced a 4.53 ERA and 64 walks in 103 innings for the Orioles on a two-year, $10 million contract and at age 34 will likely have to settle for a modest one-year deal as a middle reliever for 2013.
He’s had a sub-4.00 ERA just three times in nine full seasons and has a career mark of 4.11, yet has saved 144 games and earned more than $20 million. Getting that “proven closer” label is a helluva thing.
Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic confirms a report from journalist Américo Celado that White Sox catcher Welington Castillo will be suspended 80 games for violating baseball’s Joint Drug Agreement. Castillo was believed to have used a steroid, but according to Rosenthal, the substance was not a steroid. More details should come on Thursday.
Castillo, 31, entered Wednesday’s action batting .270/.314/.477 with six home runs and 15 RBI in 118 plate appearances. He has gotten the bulk of the work behind the plate, backed up by Omar Narváez.
Castillo’s absence will likely prompt the White Sox to call up Kevan Smith from Triple-A Charlotte. Smith battled an ankle injury in March and April, so he got a late start to the season. In 102 PA at Triple-A, he has hit .283/.343/.457.