Brad Hawpe’s ongoing comeback attempt has a new home, as Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports that the veteran first baseman/outfielder has signed a minor-league deal with the Angels.
Hawpe has struggled to come back from elbow surgery and didn’t play in the majors at all last season. He was released by the Rangers in the middle of last season and then got released by the Pirates in the middle of spring training this year.
Hawpe was consistently a very good middle-of-the-order bat for the Rockies from 2006-2009, but he hasn’t produced in the majors or minors since then and turns 34 years old in June.
Brewers outfielder Eric Thames made an early exit from Friday’s game against the Cardinals after colliding with Lorenzo Cain on an outfield catch in the first inning. According to an official report, he has been diagnosed with right knee soreness and is presumably day-to-day for the time being.
It was a brutal collision knocked both outfielders flat on their backs, but they were able to resume their positions and stick it out for the rest of the inning. Thames was up in the second, too, and struck out on five pitches from St. Louis right-hander Jack Flaherty before making an eventual exit in the top of the third. He was replaced on the field and in the lineup by Hernan Perez.
Entering Friday’s contest, the 31-year-old Thames carried a .230/.308/.516 batting line, 16 home runs and an .824 OPS in his second full season with the Brewers. He hasn’t replicated the career-high .247-average, 31-homer, 2.1-fWAR totals of his breakout performance in 2017, though that’s likely due to a combination of decreased playing time and lengthy recovery periods mandated by several significant injuries, including a torn UCL in his left thumb and a right hamstring strain. There’s no word yet on when he might return to the lineup this season.