The Phillies have acquired outfielder Jay Bruce from the Mariners, the club announced on Sunday. The two sides were reportedly deep in discussions on Saturday.
Bruce, 32, will add some power from the left side to the Phillies’ bench. He leaves Seattle batting .212/.283/.533 with 14 home runs and 28 RBI in 184 plate appearances. Bruce is expected to join the Phillies in San Diego on Monday for the beginning of a three-game series against the Padres.
Center fielder Odúbel Herrera is currently on administrative leave after being charged with domestic violence. Andrew McCutchen and Scott Kingery are handling center field. Depending on how manager Gabe Kapler decides to formulate his outfield on any given day, Bruce could get the occasional start as well.
Bruce is owed the remainder of his $13 million salary for this season and is under contract for one more year at $13 million in 2020. The Mariners are reportedly covering some, but not all, of that remaining salary.
The Mariners will receive third baseman Jake Scheiner from the Phillies. Scheiner, 23, has spent this season with High-A Clearwater, batting .256/.326/.353 in 179 trips to the plate.
Japanese League commissioner Atsushi Saito announced that Japan’s professional baseball season will open on June 19. Teams can being practice games on June 2. There will be no fans. Indeed, the league has not yet even begun to seriously discuss a plan for fans to begin attending games, though that may happen eventually.
The season will begin three months after its originally scheduled opening day of March 20. It will be 120 games long. Teams in each six-team league — the Central League and Pacific League — will play 24 games against each league opponent. There will be no interleague play and no all-star game.
The announcement came in the wake of a national state of emergency being lifted for both Tokyo and the island of Hokkaido. The rest of the country emerged from the state of emergency earlier this month. This will allow the Japanese leagues to follow leagues in South Korea and Taiwan which have been playing for several weeks.
In the United States, Major League Baseball is hoping to resume spring training in mid June before launching a shortened regular season in early July. That plan is contingent on the league and the players’ union coming to an agreement on both financial arrangements and safety protocols for a 2020 season. Negotiations on both are ongoing. Major League Baseball will, reportedly, make a formal proposal about player compensation tomorrow.