Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera was lifted from the sixth inning of Saturday’s game against the Blue Jays with a right hand contusion. While he’s not likely to land on the injured list, as X-rays came back negative for any fractures or structural damage in the hand, he may still be held back from Sunday’s series finale as a precautionary measure.
Cabrera sustained the injury in the top of the sixth inning after getting grazed by one of Aaron Sanchez‘s 93.1-m.p.h. fastballs. He immediately winced in pain and was examined by a team trainer before leaving the field, with pinch-runner Mikie Mahtook stepping in at first base. Mahtook remained in the game in the bottom of the inning, taking over for Niko Goodrum in center while Goodrum shifted to cover Cabrera’s spot at first.
Prior to the incident, the 35-year-old infielder snapped his 0-for-7 streak with a pair of base hits off of Sanchez. It wasn’t quite enough to get the Tigers on the board, however, and they dropped their second game in a row as the Blue Jays capped a 3-0 shutout. The two teams will go head-to-head for a fourth and final time on Sunday at 1:07 PM EDT.
The first truly big free agent signing of the offseason has gone down: the Chicago White Sox just announced that they have signed catcher Yasmani Grandal to a four-year, $73 million deal.
Grandal, 31, was the best catcher available in free agency. He is coming off a fine year with the Milwaukee Brewers, with whom he had to settle for a one-year pact in 2019. He hit .246/.380/.468 with 28 homers and 77 driven in. It was his fourth straight season with 20+ homers. While his catching has been criticized due to some high-profile mistakes in the postseason, the two-time All-Star once again proved himself to be one of the best pitch-framers in the game if not the best. Between the bat and the glove he has a claim to being one of the best all-around catchers in baseball.
The signing leaves open the question of what happens to James McCann, who was himself an All-Star this year. It’s not that hard a question, of course, as Grandal is a far superior catcher to McCann in every respect. The Sox could make McCann a backup. Alternatively, they could try to trade him to fill other holes on the roster.
The White Sox finished 72-89 in 2019 but are showing signs of coming out of rebuilding mode and into contention mode. This signing pushes them a big step into that direction.