Athletics place Sean Doolittle back on the disabled list

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Athletics reliever Sean Doolittle is back on the disabled list with a strained left shoulder, Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports. Angel Castro has been called up from Triple-A Nashville.

Doolittle had missed the first two months of the season due to a partial tear of his rotator cuff before making his season debut against the Tigers on May 27. The lefty, however, only topped out at 89 MPH against the Tigers and reportedly looked uncomfortable playing catch on Friday.

Tyler Clippard will continue serving as the team’s closer while Doolittle is out. He’s 6-for-7 converting saves thus far with a 2.53 ERA and a 17/12 K/BB ratio in 21 1/3 innings.

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.