The Tigers signed catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia to a one-year deal for close to the major league minimum, per MLB.com’s Jason Beck. He’ll compete for a job as the Tigers’ backup catcher, according to GM Al Avila.
Saltalamacchia, 30, hit a solid .225/.310/.435 with nine home runs and 24 RBI in 227 plate appearances last season between the Marlins and Diamondbacks.
The Tigers also have Bryan Holaday on their 40-man roster but will likely add another candidate or two heading into spring training to compete for the right to back up starter James McCann.
The Marlins will pay Saltalamacchia $8 million as that was part of what remained on his contract when they designated him for assignment at the end of April.
Mike Puma of the New York Post reports that Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen has been issuing managerial orders from home. Citing an anonymous industry source, Van Wagenen made the call to remove Jacob deGrom from his June 1 start against the Diamondbacks in the seventh inning due to a hip cramp. deGrom was visibly frustrated with his removal.
According to Puma’s source, Van Wagenen was watching the game on TV at home. He communicated with a member of the team support staff that deGrom should be removed from the game. Word got to Callaway, who went to the mound and took out his starter. Furthermore, some in the Mets’ clubhouse were miffed that Van Wagenen didn’t take credit for the decision because it looked like deGrom and Callaway were at odds with each other.
Puma also notes that the decision to limit closer Edwin Díaz’s innings is also Van Wagenen’s. Díaz was not used in Sunday’s loss against the Cubs. Javier Báez ended up hitting a go-ahead three-run home run off of Seth Lugo. Callaway was questioned for choice not to use Díaz after the game, which resulted in a brouhaha in the clubhouse.
A veteran executive of another team said that a GM issuing managerial directives would be “unusual” and “crossing the line.” He added, “I have never seen that done, personally.”
Van Wagenen insisted, “Mickey has control of baseball decisions.”
In a season marked by dysfunction, things may be even more dysfunctional within the Mets organization than we knew.