Angels send struggling Hector Santiago to the minors

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Hector Santiago was supposed to be a big part of the Angels’ rotation when they acquired him from the White Sox in a three-team trade this offseason, but instead he pitched his way into a move to the bullpen two weeks ago and now they’ve demoted him to Triple-A.

Santiago has an ugly 0-6 record, but his 4.82 ERA and .257 opponents’ batting average aren’t that horrible. However, he’s struggled to consistently throw strikes and manager Mike Scioscia wasn’t comfortable enough using him in the bullpen to give Santiago regular relief work, so the Angels believe he’s better off starting every fifth day in the minors.

Santiago had a 3.51 ERA in 23 starts for the White Sox last season, which is why the Angels were willing to part with Mark Trumbo in the deal for him. Of course, it’s worth noting that Trumbo has hit just .210 (albeit with his usual big power) for the Diamondbacks and hasn’t played since April 21 because of a foot injury.

Royals, Alex Gordon close to contract agreement

Alex Gordon
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MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan reports that the Royals and outfielder Alex Gordon are “getting close” to an agreement on a one-year contract. Terms of the deal aren’t yet known, but the Royals could make it official within the next few days.

Gordon, who turns 36 years old next month, hit .266/.345/.396 with 13 home runs and 76 RBI over 633 plate appearances with the Royals this past season. His offense has waned, owning an adjusted OPS of 84 since 2016 (100 is average), but he still plays decent defense.

Gordon has spent all 13 years of his major league career with the Royals. With the club in a rebuilding phase, he will serve as the clubhouse leader and be a mentor to younger players on the roster.