Pirates place Wandy Rodriguez on unconditional release waivers

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The Pirates designated Wandy Rodriguez for assignment last week, and the team has now placed him on unconditional release waivers, Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune reports.

Rodriguez has been pitching with an arthritic elbow all season, and it showed in his results. The 35-year-old lefty posted a 6.75 ERA with a 20/8 K/BB ratio in six starts spanning 26 2/3 innings. Because he’s left-handed, it’s hard to imagine he won’t find opportunities to pitch elsewhere.

Anthony Rizzo to wear walking boot for five to seven days

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Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo suffered what appeared to be an awful injury during Sunday’s game against the Pirates, twisting his ankle while attempting to field a bunt. An MRI revealed that he has a lateral sprain of his right ankle, Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times reports. Rizzo will wear a walking boot for five to seven days before being reevaluated.

Given that there are only two weeks left in the regular season, it seems doubtful Rizzo would be able to return to aid the Cubs’ NL Wild Card chase. The club entered Monday leading the second Wild Card by a game over the Brewers.

Rizzo, 30, is batting .289/.404/.516 with 26 home runs, 93 RBI, and 88 runs scored in 592 plate appearances on the year. Victor Caratini started at first base for Monday’s game against the Reds. The Cubs may also use Ian Happ, Willson Contreras, and Jonathan Lucroy at first base while Rizzo is out.