Pirates sign outfielder Matt Joyce

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This time last year Matt Joyce was the Angels’ starting left fielder after being acquired from the Rays for reliever Kevin Jepsen. He flopped, hitting .174 in 93 games, and now the 31-year-old has had to settle for a minor-league deal with the Pirates.

Joyce was a consistently above-average hitter for the Rays from 2010-2014, posting a .778 OPS and making the All-Star team in 2011. He’s best suited to be a platoon player starting versus right-handed pitching, but with Andrew McCutchen, Starling Marte, and Gregory Polanco locked in as Pittsburgh’s starting outfield Joyce will probably be competing for a bench role.

Pittsburgh is already planning to platoon John Jaso and Michael Morse at first base, so in addition to managing only a minor-league contract Joyce also landed in a situation where a roster spot may be tough to secure.

Carlos Martínez underwent ‘small procedure’ on right shoulder

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Cardinals president of baseball operations John Mozeliak confirmed on Sunday, to KMOX/1120 AM and StlToday.com, that pitcher Carlos Martínez underwent a “small procedure” to address discomfort in his right shoulder and encourage healing as well as a platelet-rich plasma injection.

Martínez, 28, began experiencing shoulder issues in 2018 which impacted his ability to pitch deep into games. Upon his return from the injured list in late August that year, the club moved him into the bullpen. He remained in the bullpen for 2019, making his season debut in May, and had a successful year, racking up 24 saves with a 3.17 ERA and a 53/18 K/BB ratio in 48 1/3 innings.

Martínez wants to start again and the Cardinals have said they will afford him the opportunity. He is expected to be on track to participate in spring training as usual.