Released by the Astros on July 31, veteran first baseman Carlos Pena has agreed to a minor-league contract with the Royals.
Kansas City is obviously set at first base and designated hitter with Eric Hosmer and Billy Butler, but general manager Dayton Moore is apparently looking at Pena as a left-handed bench option for September.
Pena hit .209 with eight homers and a .674 OPS in 85 games for the Astros and hasn’t posted a batting average above .230 since 2008, but he can still draw tons of walks and smack the occasional extra-base hit. For now he’ll head to Triple-A and try to play his way into a September call-up.
Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News reports that reliever Shawn Tolleson is retiring from baseball. The right-hander experienced a setback in his recovery from Tommy John surgery last week.
Tolleson, who turns 31 years old on Saturday, last pitched in the majors in 2016. He had two very good years out of the bullpen for the Rangers in 2014-15, posting an aggregate 2.88 ERA with 145 strikeouts and 45 walks across 144 innings.
Tolleson signed a one-year deal with the Rays in January 2017 before undergoing Tommy John surgery several months later. The Rangers inked him to a minor league contract in December 2017, but he wasn’t able to work his way back.