White Sox sign Tommy Hanson

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Released by the Rangers near the end of spring training, right-hander Tommy Hanson has agreed to a minor-league contract with the White Sox, according to Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com.

Hanson is 27 years old and just a few seasons removed from being one of the best starters in baseball for the Braves, but his decline has been incredibly rapid and injuries have sapped his once-dominant raw stuff.

Last season for the Angels he had a 5.42 ERA and just 6.9 strikeouts per nine innings, and this spring he coughed up 11 runs in 14 frames for the Rangers before being cut. It’s a no-risk move for the White Sox, however, and for now they’ll stash Hanson at Triple-A as organizational depth.

Cardinals move Luke Weaver to the bullpen

Luke Weaver
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Cardinals right-hander Luke Weaver has been reassigned to the bullpen, manager Mike Shildt announced Sunday. Fellow righty Daniel Poncedeleon will take his spot in the rotation for the time being, though it’s still unclear whether Weaver’s demotion is a permanent one or not.

Still, it’s not the most surprising of moves, especially as the club advances toward a potential playoff berth in October. Weaver, 24, has struggled to find his groove this season after putting up a 6-11 record in 24 starts and a 4.67 ERA, 3.2 BB/9 and 8.0 SO/9 over 125 1/3 innings in 2018. During two of his last three outings in August, he was pulled before the fifth inning, citing mechanical issues with his delivery that may be impacting his fastball location and delivery and having an adverse effect on his results — and those of the team — as well.

Poncedeleon, on the other hand, appears primed to take on more responsibility following an impressive run with the Cardinals this summer. He maintained a sub-3.00 ERA through his first six appearances, issuing four runs, nine walks, and 10 strikeouts over 17 2/3 innings. While he hasn’t handled more than one start in the big leagues, his track record in the minors speaks to his ability to get consistent results on the mound: he went 9-3 in 17 starts at Triple-A Memphis with a 2.15 ERA, 4.7 BB/9 and 10.1 SO/9 across 92 innings. He’s scheduled to cover for Weaver on Tuesday against the Pirates and will presumably continue to pitch out of the rotation for the remaining six weeks of the season.