Alex Pavlovic of the Mercury News reports that Giants outfielder Angel Pagan will play in two rehab games with Triple-A Fresno, including tonight’s contest against the Salt Lake Bees. Barring any setbacks, he will likely be activated before the club opens up a three-game series in Milwaukee against the Brewers.
Pagan, 33, has been out of commission since June 15 with a bulging disk in his lower back. Nevertheless, the veteran was able to muster a respectable .307/.356/.411 line with three home runs, 19 RBI, and 11 stolen bases in 262 plate appearances leading up to his injury.
Robert Murray and MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reported earlier, respectively, that the Phillies signed pitcher Francisco Liriano and infielder Neil Walker to minor league contracts. If he makes the major league roster, Liriano will earn a salary of $1.5 million with an additional $1.25 million available through performance incentives. Walker’s contract information is not yet known.
Liriano, 36, struggled from 2016-18 but enjoyed a productive year out of the bullpen for the Pirates this past season. He posted a 3.47 ERA with 63 strikeouts and 35 walks over 70 innings. The lefty was quite effective against same-handed batters, limiting fellow lefties to a .659 OPS. That would figure to be a key component if Liriano makes the Phillies’ Opening Day roster.
Walker, 34, hit .261/.344/.395 with eight home runs and 38 RBI over 381 plate appearances with the Marlins last year. The veteran is versastile, having played first, second, and third base along with both corner outfield spots in recent seasons. Despite Walker’s versatility, it is tough to see room on the Phillies’ roster for him, barring injuries to other players. It never hurts to have depth.