Orioles infielder/outfielder Breyvic Valera is headed to the Giants in exchange for cash considerations, per an official team announcement on Saturday. Valera was designated for assignment on Friday in order to make roster space for right-hander Austin Brice, whom the Orioles claimed off of waivers from the Angels.
Valera, 26, got a longer look in the majors during his sophomore season in 2018. He was part of the multi-player trade that sent Manny Machado from Baltimore to Los Angeles last July and finished the season batting .234/.301/.266 with a triple, a stolen base, and eight RBI in 75 PA for the two teams.
While he has yet to hit his stride on a major-league level, Valera showed considerably more pop at the plate over half a season’s worth of games in Triple-A Oklahoma City and Norfolk, where he combined for a .261 average and cobbled together 27 extra-base hits and a .738 OPS. Perhaps more importantly for the depth-starved Giants, he offers a fair amount of positional versatility, having tried his glove at second base, third base, short, and right field over 25 total games in the majors.
The Yankees placed Nestor Cortes on the 15-day injured list with a left rotator cuff strain that will sideline the left-hander for at least two starts.
The move is retroactive to Monday and Cortes will be shut down for at least 15 days.
After Tuesday’s game, Cortes said the shoulder has been bothering him between starts and more so after he pitched five innings May 30 in Seattle.
“I took two days off and when I got to LA and threw that first day, I didn’t feel right,” Cortes said Tuesday. “But it was first day coming back from pitching so I knew it was going to be nagging a little bit. So I waited a little bit.
“That second day in LA was when I said something because it felt like I had pitched yesterday. So I wasn’t recovering in time.”
Cortes is 5-2 with a 5.16 ERA in 11 starts and has particularly struggled later in outings. Opponents are hitting .447 when facing him for the third time in a game.
Last year, Cortes was an All-Star and went 12-4 with a 2.44 ERA in 28 starts.
Randy Vásquez was recalled from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes Barre to take Cortes’ spot in the rotation and will make his second career start in Thursday’s doubleheader. Vásquez made his major league debut May 26 against San Diego when the Yankees needed a starter because Domingo Germán was serving a 10-game suspension for using sticky substances.