Jorge Soler suspended five games for bat-wielding incident

20 Comments

Cubs prospect Jorge Soler has been suspended five games by the Florida State League following last night’s incident in which he grabbed a bat and went after the opposing team’s dugout.

Soler was dragged away by coaches before any physical contact was made and the whole thing followed the benches clearing after Soler and an infielder got tangled up at second base.

Team president Theo Epstein addressed the situation shortly before the suspension was handed down, telling reporters that Soler is “tremendously remorseful” and the Cubs “condemn the action but support the player.”

Soler, who defected from Cuba last year at age 20, signed a nine-year, $30 million contract with the Cubs and has hit .318 with seven homers and an .895 OPS in 40 pro games.

Nathan Eovaldi to make 2018 debut for Rays soon

Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Rays manager Kevin Cash said that pitcher Nathan Eovaldi will join the starting rotation on Monday or Tuesday to face the Athletics, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports. Eovaldi’s rehab outing with Triple-A Durham went well, even though he gave up eight runs in four innings.

Eovaldi, 28, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2016 after undergoing Tommy John surgery. He had arthroscopic surgery in March to remove loose bodies in his elbow. It’s been a long road back. Knowing Eovaldi needed to recover from surgery, the Rays signed him to a one-year, $2 million contract in 2017 that included a $2 million club option for 2018 that they exercised last November.

When Eovaldi last pitched, he ranked among baseball’s hardest throwers, particularly among starters. He averaged 97.1 MPH on his fastball in 2016. Among starters who racked up at least 100 innings that season, only the Mets’ Noah Syndergaard had a higher average velocity (97.9 MPH). It remains to be seen if he still has that velocity after undergoing two procedures on his elbow.

The Rays will be glad to have Eovaldi back. The club has sustained injuries to Jake Faria, Yonny Chirinos, and Jose De Leon.