AL Central Notes: May, Jackson, Jimenez, Smith

Posted: May 2, 2017 in Uncategorized
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The White Sox announced that Opening Day center fielder Jacob May has been optioned to Triple-A Charlotte. A corresponding roster move will be made tonight. As CSN Chicago’s Dan Hayes writes, May winning the Opening Day gig in center was a surprise that was fueled by a strong spring performance, but his 2-for-36 start to the season ended his first taste of the Majors. “He might have been a little overmatched,” manager Rick Renteria said of May. “That’s just the bottom line. You want to make excuses for it. Might have been a little overmatched right now. … His energy has always been the same. It’s very consistent. He’s done everything for the work in the field and working with the guys in the cages and everything else we could have asked of him.” With May in Triple-A, Leury Garcia figures to continue to receive quite a bit of time in center field. The 26-year-old is off to a .306/.323/.484 start to his season through 65 plate appearances.

More from the AL Central…

  • Indians outfielder Austin Jackson exited last night’s game with an apparent injury, as MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian writes. Jackson seemingly injured his left leg or foot when attempting to leg out an infield single, as he landed awkwardly on the first base bag. As Bastian points out, Jackson had left knee surgery last season, though manager Terry Francona said after the game that Jackson’s foot would be examined rather than his knee. Jackson was able to walk off the field under his own power, though he was in noticeable pain after beating out the throw to first base. The 30-year-old Jackson is off to a nice start with Cleveland, hitting .273/.368/.485 through 38 plate appearances.
  • The Tigers optioned right-hander Joe Jimenez back to Triple-A on Sunday, and MLive.com’s Evan Woodberry writes that he was sent down with the specific goal of improving his slider. The 22-year-old Jimenez was knocked around for six runs in 3 1/3 innings in his most recent stint with the big league club. “…[T]hat slider could be the difference-maker, in terms of making the jump to the big leagues and sticking,” said manager Brad Ausmus. Tigers relievers have a league-worst 6.19 ERA on the season, and Jimenez is the team’s most promising relief prospect, so it stands to reason that he’ll likely be back with the big league club in the relatively near future.
  • Minor League Baseball announced yesterday that former Twins general manager Bill Smith has been hired as an assistant to president and CEO Pat O’Conner. “[Smith’s] wealth of experience in all aspects of Major League Baseball and Minor League Baseball will be helpful as we continue to grow our operations and improve the teams’ ability to serve our fans and partners at Major League Baseball,” said O’Conner of the hiring. “Bill is respected throughout the industry and his abilities are unquestioned.” Per MiLB’s release, Smith will on facility improvements, scheduling and minor league baseball’s international leagues.

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