Athletics to promote Franklin Barreto from Triple-A

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Athletics top prospect Franklin Barreto is due for a promotion from Triple-A Nashville, per a report from Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle on Saturday. In a corresponding move, utility infielder/outfielder Chad Pinder will be assigned to the 10-day disabled list with a hyperextended left knee. The club has yet to confirm either move.

Barreto, 22, was ranked no. 3 in the A’s farm system prior to the start of the 2018 season. He debuted with the team in 2017 and finished his brief run in the big leagues with an underwhelming .197/.250/.352 batting line and two home runs in 76 plate appearances. While he has yet to find his footing in the majors, the rookie middle infielder has long impressed the team at the minor league level. He reached Triple-A by his age-20 season and slashed .290/.339/.456 with seven homers, 15 stolen bases and a .796 OPS during a full campaign in Triple-A Nashville last year.

Barring further injuries, it seems unlikely that the A’s will have a full-time role for Barreto after he’s called up, though he projects to be their sole backup behind middle infielders Jed Lowrie and Marcus Semien. He went 2-for-4 in his Triple-A season debut last week with a double and two-run homer during a historic 11-0 shutout against the New Orleans Baby Cakes.

Dodgers sign OF Jason Heyward to minor league deal

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LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles Dodgers signed outfielder Jason Heyward to a minor league deal and invited him to spring training.

The 33-year-old was released by the Chicago Cubs earlier this offseason.

Heyward, who was injured at times last season, put up the worst offensive numbers of his career, batting .204 and with 10 RBIs and one home run in 137 plate appearances. However, he’s a valuable defender in the outfield.

The deal reunites Heyward with first baseman Freddie Freeman. They came up through the Atlanta Braves system and have remained friends ever since.

Heyward was a leader in the Cubs’ clubhouse, helping them win the 2016 World Series.