With reliever Ronald Belisario’s deal with the Blue Jays having fallen through, the Rays took the opportunity to snap him up and sign him to a minor league deal, per Mark Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times. Topkin adds that the Rays are likely to add infielder Alexi Casilla on a minor league deal as well. Both are expected to compete for major league jobs during spring training.
Belisario, 32, spent last season with the White Sox, finishing with a 5.56 ERA and a 47/18 K/BB ratio in 66 1/3 innings. He was effective out of the bullpen in the previous two seasons with the Dodgers, however.
Casilla, 30, has a career .633 OPS over parts of nine seasons in the major leagues. He appeared in only one game for the Orioles last season, spending most of the year with Triple-A Norfolk.
Braves 21-year-old outfielder Ronald Acuña Jr. nabbed his 30th stolen base of the season on Friday, becoming the second-youngest player in Major League history to produce at least 30 home runs and 30 stolen bases in a single season. Per MLB Stats, the only other player under 22 years old to pull off the feat is Mike Trout, who did so with 30 home runs and 49 stolen bases during his age-20 season in 2012.
Acuña’s triumphant moment came in the eighth inning of Friday’s game against the Mets. He drew a six-pitch walk against righty reliever Seth Lugo, then waited for an opportune moment as Ozzie Albies stepped to the plate. Lugo fired a 93-m.p.h. fastball to Albies for ball no. 2, which was promptly returned to second base by catcher Wilson Ramos. The throw came in high, however; Amed Rosario had to jump to make the catch, allowing Acuña to slide safely into the bag and hit his career mark.
It’s been an eventful season for the All-Star outfielder, whose 36 home runs and 30 stolen bases helps pad a .294/.377/.536 batting line and 5.1 fWAR over 597 plate appearances. Through the first 11 innings of Friday’s contest, he went 0-for-3 with a pair of walks and a stolen base.