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Brewers, Erik Kratz avoid arbitration

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The Brewers announced that the club and catcher Erik Kratz have agreed to a one-year contract, avoiding arbitration. Kratz was eligible for arbitration in his third of four years. He’ll earn $300,000 guaranteed and $1.2 million in total if he stays in the majors, per Jon Heyman of Fancred.

Kratz, 38, was lackluster with the bat during the regular season, batting .236/.280/.355 in 219 plate appearances. However, he played solid enough defense and handled the pitching staff well. During the playoffs, Kratz had two hits and two RBI in Game 2 of the NLDS against the Rockies and three hits in Game 3, helping the Brewers advance to the NLCS. Understandably, the Brewers wanted him back.

Kratz is still behind Manny Piña on the Brewers’ depth chart, but he could be in line for a bit more playing time in 2019.

Rays place Austin Meadows on 10-day injured list with thumb sprain

Austin Meadows
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Rays outfielder Austin Meadows has been placed on the 10-day injured list with a right thumb sprain, per a team announcement Sunday. No concrete timetable has been given for his return to the lineup just yet, but he’s scheduled to meet with a hand specialist on Sunday as the Rays try to determine the extent of his injury.

Meadows, 23, suffered the sprain in the seventh inning of Saturday’s 6-5 loss to the Red Sox. He lined a two-run triple into the right-center field gap — one of a franchise-record four triples that the Rays recorded in the game — but slid awkwardly into third base and jammed his right thumb in the process. He didn’t appear to be in obvious pain following the hit, however, nor was he removed from the game at the time.

Prior to the setback, Meadows carried a hefty .351/.422/.676 batting line with six homers, 19 RBI, and a 1.097 OPS through his first 83 plate appearances of 2019. He was replaced by Guillermo Heredia in right field for Sunday’s series finale and will likely lose a few starts to Avisaíl García as well.

In a series of corresponding moves, right-handed reliever Jake Faria was optioned to Triple-A Durham, infielder/outfielder Andrew Velazquez and righty reliever Emilio Pagán were recalled from Triple-A, and reliever Hunter Wood was placed on the paternity list. Second baseman Joey Wendle was also reinstated from the 10-day injured list after rehabbing a left hamstring strain and is scheduled take over the keystone during the Rays’ matinee against the Red Sox on Sunday.