Not so long ago Jemile Weeks looked like the A’s long-term answer at second base, but they briefly sent him to Triple-A after he struggled in the first half last season and now he’ll begin this year back in the minors.
He hit .370 this spring, but the offseason trade for Jed Lowrie crowded the A’s infield and Weeks has missed time with a shoulder injury.
Weeks was a first-round pick in 2008 and hit .303 with 22 steals in 97 games as a rookie in 2011, but batted just .221 in 118 games last season. And now the A’s have decided to give Scott Sizemore an opportunity at second base ahead of him.
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.