Pirates place A.J. Burnett on the disabled list with elbow inflammation

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Travis Sawchik of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports that the Pirates have placed starter A.J. Burnett on the 15-day disabled list due to inflammation in his right elbow. The club has recalled pitcher Bobby LaFromboise from Triple-A Indiapolis to take Burnett’s spot on the roster.

Burnett, 38, has struggled over his last three starts, allowing 18 earned runs in 16 innings. As a result, his ERA has ballooned from 2.11 to 3.06. The Pirates acquired pitcher J.A. Happ in a trade with the Mariners just ahead of the 4 PM EST trade deadline, so he will take Burnett’s spot in the rotation.

In an unrelated move, the Pirates designated pitcher Deolis Guerra to make room for reliever Joakim Soria — acquired in a trade with the Tigers on Thursday — on the roster.

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.