It was reported earlier this week that reliever Tommy Hunter was close to landing a two-year deal with the Yankees worth between $11.5-12 million before it was voided due to an issue with his physical. Coming back from core muscle repair surgery, he ended up settling for a one-year, $2 million deal with the Indians.
Indians manager Terry Francona said earlier this week that Hunter will likely begin the season on the disabled list, but he went a step further this afternoon by telling Jordan Bastian of MLB.com that he could be sidelined through mid-May. Craig Stammen, who recently signed a minor league deal with Cleveland, is also expected to miss the start of the season as he makes his way back from surgery to repair a torn flexor tendon. Both could be useful bullpen arms if they come back healthy, but the Indians will have to make do without them in the early part of the season.
Hunter, 29, compiled a 4.18 ERA and 47/14 K/BB ratio over 60 1/3 innings between the Orioles and Cubs in 2015.
Cardinals right-handed reliever Greg Holland has been placed on the 10-day disabled list with a right hip impingement, per a team announcement on Saturday. In corresponding moves, catcher Carson Kelly (right hamstring strain) and lefty reliever Tyler Lyons (back strain) were activated from the disabled list, while catcher Steven Baron was optioned to Triple-A Memphis. The team has yet to reveal how long Holland is expected to be sidelined.
The 32-year-old reliever hasn’t looked quite himself this season, limping toward a 9.45 ERA, 10.1 BB/9 and 6.8 SO/9 in just 13 1/3 innings of work. It’s a concerning departure from the sub-4.00 ERA and NL-leading 41 saves he posted with the Rockies in 2017, though a brief stay on the disabled list may help him iron out some of the issues that have prevented him from replicating those numbers in 2018. This is the first major injury he’s sustained since 2015, when he underwent surgery to repair a torn UCL in his pitching arm; he doesn’t appear to have a history of hip issues, either.
Lyons, 30, will slot back into the bullpen while Holland recovers. The left-hander landed on the 10-day disabled list in mid-May after pitching to a 6.17 ERA, 3.9 BB/9 and 9.3 SO/9 across 11 2/3 innings — underwhelming results, to be sure, but nothing close to Holland’s career-worst output. Lyons saw mixed results in two rehab starts with Double-A Springfield earlier this month, allowing two runs on two hits and recording one strikeout in 1 2/3 innings.