Pirates place Jose Tabata on the disabled list

1 Comment

Another day, another player hitting the disabled list with an oblique injury. This time it’s Pirates outfielder Jose Tabata, who goes on the shelf while being replaced on the roster with Josh Harrison coming up from Triple-A.

Tabata was having a decent season, at least for his modest standards, hitting .272 with two homers and a .744 OPS that’s just two points off his career-high .746 mark as a rookie in 2010.

Based on the standard recovery timetable for oblique strains he figures to miss more than the minimum 15 days.

Rays sign lefty Ryan Merritt to a minor league deal

Getty Images
Leave a comment

The Tampa Bay Rays have signed lefty swingman Ryan Merritt to a minor league contract. Nah, it’s not a big signing but we’ll take anything today.

Merritt, who has spent his entire career in the Indians organization, spent the entire 2018 season at Triple-A Columbus. It wasn’t a bad year for him — he posted a 3.79 ERA and a 52/2 K/BB ratio in 13 starts and two relief appearances covering 71.1 innings — but the Tribe just couldn’t find a role for him at the big league level. He has shown in the past, however, that he can hack it in the bigs, having posted a 1.71 ERA in 31.2 innings with the Indians between 2016-2017.

His thing is that he simply doesn’t strike guys out at anything approaching a typical clip for a big leaguer: 3.7 per nine innings in his small sample of major league outings and 6.3 Ks per nine innings in the minors. Which, while it may not prevent him from having success at the big league level, is likely a reason for the limited number of chances he’s been given.

The Rays are probably the best place he could go, frankly. They’ve shown themselves willing to utilize guys in unique ways and are more likely than most teams to find places to spot a lefty control specialist who has shown he can both start and come out of the pen.