Pat Neshek on A’s playoff roster following son’s death

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Pat Neshek, whose son Gehrig John Neshek died Wednesday less than 24 hours after his birth, has rejoined the A’s in Detroit and will reportedly be on the team’s playoff roster for the ALDS against the Tigers.

Neshek will be available out of the bullpen after working his way back from the minors to appear in 24 games for the A’s down the stretch, posting a 1.37 ERA in 20 innings.

Manager Bob Melvin talked to reporters about how he hopes the support from teammates can help Neshek deal with the tragedy.

Diamondbacks, T.J. McFarland avoid arbitration

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Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that the Diamondbacks and reliever T.J. McFarland have avoided arbitration, agreeing on a $1.45 million salary for the 2019 season. McFarland, in his third of four years of arbitration eligibility, filed for $1.675 million while the Diamondbacks countered at $1.275 million. McFarland ended up settling for just under the midpoint of those two figures.

McFarland, 29, was terrific out of the bullpen for the D-Backs last season, finishing with a 2.00 ERA and a 42/22 K/BB ratio in 72 innings. While the lefty may not miss a lot of bats, he does induce quite a few grounders. His 67.9 percent ground ball rate last season was the third highest among relievers with at least 50 innings, trailing only Brad Ziegler (71.1%) and Scott Alexander (70.6%).

McFarland was dominant against left-handed hitters, limiting them to a .388 OPS last season, but the D-Backs deployed him nearly twice as often against right-handed hitters, who posted an aggregate .764 OPS against him. It will be interesting to see if the club decides to use him more as a platoon reliever in 2019.