Rays acquire Peter Fairbanks from Rangers

Peter Fairbanks
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The Rays executed a trade with the Rangers on Saturday, acquiring right-hander Peter Fairbanks in exchange for second baseman/outfielder Nick Solak. In subsequent moves, the Rays assigned Fairbanks to Triple-A Durham and shifted Christian Arroyo to the 60-day injured list, while the Rangers transferred Solak to Triple-A Nashville.

Fairbanks, 25, has gotten off to a rough start in his rookie season. He made just eight appearances for the Rangers, pitching to a 9.35 ERA after giving up 10 runs, seven walks, and four home runs, and striking out 15 of 41 batters across 8 2/3 innings. He’ll get a chance to turn things around with the Rays, who will presumably bring him up again when rosters expand in September. He’s proven significantly more reliable in the minors so far, delivering a collective 4.15 ERA, 2.1 BB/9, and 13.2 SO/9 over 26 frames at the High-A, Double-A, and Triple-A levels in 2019.

Solak, 24, ranked no. 12 among the Rays’ top prospects this year, per MLB Pipeline’s valuation. The infielder/outfielder received high praise for his high contact rate and “selectively aggressive approach” at the plate, but has yet to see results on a major-league level. At the time of the trade, he left Triple-A Durham batting a hearty .266/.353/.485 with 17 home runs and an .838 OPS through 349 plate appearances. He’ll serve as minor league infield/outfield depth for the time being.

Zack Britton’s season over, TJ surgery comeback out of time

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
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NEW YORK — Zack Britton‘s season is over, his comeback from Tommy John surgery cut short after just three relief appearances for the New York Yankees.

New York put the 34-year-old left-hander on the 60-day injured list and selected the contract of right-hander Jacob Barnes from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

Britton was removed after throwing a tiebreaking wild pitch in a 2-1 loss to Baltimore, an outing that lasted just nine pitches. The two-time All-Star had Tommy John surgery on Sept. 8, 2021, and made eight minor league injury rehabilitation appearances starting Aug. 24 and three big league appearances beginning Sept. 24. He threw 36 pitches to nine batters with a 13.50 ERA, six walks and one strikeout.

“Kind of running out of time here and having a little bit of fatigue last night, it’s like one of those things, you don’t want to power through that and reach for more and then do some damage as you’re coming back,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. “He’s in a good spot heading into the offseason.”

Britton had hoped to be able to help the Yankees in the postseason. He is eligible for free agency after the World Series.

“It’s just that final sharpness,” Boone said. “At this point in the season, just kind of up against it there. But he worked his tail off to put himself in this position and give himself an opportunity and certainly admire that.”

Barnes, 32, started the season with Detroit and was released on June 18 after going 3-1 with a 6.10 ERA in 22 relief appearances. He struck out 10 and walked nine in 20 2/3 innings.

Barnes signed a minor league contract with Seattle, made four relief appearances for Triple-A Tacoma, then was brought up by the Mariners and designated for assignment two days later without playing in a game. He refused an outright assignment, signed back with the Tigers and made five appearances at Triple-A Toledo. Released by the Mud Hens, he signed with Scranton on Aug. 30 and had a 2.25 ERA in 10 games for the RailRiders.

Boone said reliever Clay Holmes will not go on the IL after receiving a cortisone injection for inflammation in his right rotator cuff. If the Yankees had put Holmes on the IL, he would not be available for the Division Series.

After playing his first game since Sept. 4 and going 0 for 3, DJ LeMahieu said his injured right second toe felt fine. He is in a 2-for-41 slide.

“It felt good to play again,” LeMahieu said. “I felt like a baseball player.”

Matt Carpenter, sidelined since breaking his left toot on Aug. 8, ran on the field and will be among players reporting to training camp for Double-A Somerset, where there will be eight or nine pitchers. Boone anticipates Carpenter being available for the postseason as a pinch-hitter or designated hitter.

Right-hander Frankie Montas, sidelined since Sept. 16 by inflammation in his pitching shoulder, has resumed throwing.

“I don’t know about the Division Series,” Boone said, “more likely beyond.”