Phil Coke is now with his third organization this season, as Chris Iott of MLive.com reports that the veteran left-hander has signed a minor league contract with the Athletics. He has been assigned to High-A Stockton.
Coke just opted for free agency this week after being designated for assignment by the Blue Jays. The 32-year-old allowed one run in 2 2/3 innings over two appearances during his brief stint with Toronto. He had a 6.30 ERA over 16 appearances with the Cubs earlier this season.
Iott hears that Coke’s minor league deal includes an opt-out on July 10 if he isn’t called up to the majors.
Phillies manager Joe Girardi told reporters today that Andrew McCutchen will not be ready to play to start the season. McCutchen is still recovering from the ACL tear he suffered last year. Girardi said that McCutchen hasn’t suffered a setback, but is simply not on a timetable that would allow him to play on Opening Day.
Obviously, this is a bit of a blow for the Phillies. McCutchen isn’t the MVP-level player he once ways, but he’s still a difference-maker and can be a spark plug for an offense. He was off to a .256/.378/.457 start in his 262 plate appearances before the injury struck. His continued stint on the injured list opens up everyday at-bats for Jay Bruce, whom the Phillies traded for during the 2019 season to help fill the hole caused by McCutchen’s injury. Bruce moving up the depth chart opens up a roster spot for someone like Neil Walker, Nick Martini or Kyle Garlick to make the team.
Girardi said that the Phillies expect McCutchen back at some point in April, so he hopefully won’t be on the shelf too much longer. Still, it stinks that we’re going to have wait longer for one of the more fun players in baseball to suit up again.