Third baseman Will Middlebrooks, who was non-tendered by the Padres earlier this month, has agreed to a minor-league deal with the Brewers.
It’s a good landing spot for Middlebrooks as he tries to get his career back on track after following up a strong rookie showing for the Red Sox with three straight poor years. He hit just .212 with nine homers and a .602 OPS in 83 games for the Padres in 2015 and is a career .231 hitter with a .673 OPS in 315 games through age 26.
Middlebrooks’ lack of plate discipline makes him a poor bet to live up to his old prospect hype, but he’s still relatively young and the rebuilding Brewers don’t have a clear-cut starting third baseman ahead of him on the depth chart.
Almost exactly a year ago, Diamondbacks outfielder Steven Souza Jr. tore a bicep while diving for a ball in a spring training game. He’d play in only 72 games last year but he really wasn’t healthy for any of them, with the injury and aggravations to it costing him production and causing him pain.
When he started spring training this year he said he’d take it easier in games that didn’t count so he could be ready for the regular season. Sadly, he was once again injured on the eve of Opening Day, crumbling to the ground after injuring his knee while scoring on a double in an exhibition game against the White Sox (video here if you want to see it).
The injury looked bad — he was in obvious pain and could not put any weight on the leg while being helped off the field. He’s undergoing an MRI today and we’ll hear more soon, but it does not look good.
Assuming Souza is out for an extended period, Adam Jones will likely be the Dbacks’ everyday right fielder.