Brett Lawrie begins minor league rehab assignment tonight

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Brett Lawrie has been sidelined since June 22 due to a broken right index finger suffered on a hit-by-pitch, but Gregor Chisholm of MLB.com reports that he’s scheduled to begin a minor league rehab assignment tonight with High-A Dunedin.

Blue Jays manager John Gibbons expects Lawrie to spend at least one week on his rehab stint, but at this rate, he should still beat both Edwin Encarnacion and Adam Lind back from the disabled list. He’s starting at second base tonight and will play third base tomorrow, so it looks like he’ll continue to shuffle between positions once he’s ready to rejoin the big club.

Lawrie, 24, is batting .244/.299/.419 with 12 home runs and 38 RBI over 69 games this season. He has made 43 starts at third base and 26 starts at second base.

Rays’ Erik Neander named Executive of the Year

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At the GM meetings in Scottsdale, Arizona on Monday, Rays GM Erik Neander was named the recipient of Major League Baseball’s Executive of the Year Award for the 2019 season. The Yankees’ Brian Cashman was the runner-up while the Athletics’ Billy Beane and the Twins’ Derek Falvey tied for third place.

Neander has worked for the Rays since 2017 but has operated in his current role since November 2016, taking over for Matthew Silverman who was promoted to president of the Rays alongside Brian Auld.

The Rays had, by far, the lowest payroll in baseball at $53.5 million, according to USA TODAY. Neander’s peers voting him Executive of the Year on the same today the league had to curtail its awarding of a prize belt to the team that suppressed salaries the most in arbitration is… certainly interesting timing.

At any rate, Neander’s Rays went 96-66 in 2019, finishing in second place in the AL East behind the 103-59 Yankees. The Rays claimed the second AL Wild Card and defeated the A’s to earn entry into the ALDS where they lost in five games to the Astros. It was the Rays’ first playoff appearance since 2013 and their regular season win total was second-most in franchise history behind the 2008 team (97).