- Baltimore made a surprising run to the
postseason last year due in large part to their success against opponents in
their division. According to the
the Orioles have the most wins against AL East opponents since the beginning of
2012 with 50, ahead of the Yankees at 46.
With a 7-5 record against the AL East to start the season, they will need
all of that success to repeat a postseason
- Closer Joel Hanrahan will have to
sit on the bench for a couple weeks and wait out his opportunity to right the
ship on a poor start. The Boston
hurler has a blown save on the season coupled with a towering earned-run
average (11.57), as he has walked five over 4.2 innings and served up three home
runs. Andrew Bailey will slide into
the closer spot, hoping to make an immediate impression on a role the former A’s
closer lost in 2012 due to injury.
- Top pitching prospect Allen Webster
got the call for the Red Sox to give the team another starter for their
day-night doubleheader against the Royals on Sunday. The talented fireballer recorded a
quality start by surrendering three runs (two earned) over six innings with five
strikeouts. Webster will be sent
back down to Triple-A but is due to play a larger role for Boston later in the
- Several Rays fans and
baseball pundits are calling for the promotion of top prospect Wil Myers given
their anemic offensive start to the season. Tampa Bay is reluctant to make the call, as they
would control the outfielder for an additional season if they wait until
late-April or early-May to promote him.
front office has denied that they would allow this to factor into their decision
to promote Myers, but the questions will remain until that time comes. Until then, either put on ear plugs or
get used to the various screams for Myers, who is hitting .304 with a .834 OPS
through 15 games with the Triple-A Durham Bulls.
- Speaking of Rays prospects,
Bay just lost its best
back-up to struggling shortstop Yunel Escobar. Hak-Ju Lee tore ligaments in his
knee on a collision at second base at Triple-A Durham and will be out for the
remainder of the season.
- Shortstop Derek Jeter received
another setback this week - only this one is much greater than before. Tests revealed a small crack in his
injured ankle, which will put the Yankees’ most recognizable star out
until sometime after the All-Star Break.
- Brett Lawrie returned to third base
for the Blue Jays on Tuesday, but the Canadian went just 4-for-23 with
nine strikeouts and no walks through the end of the week. Toronto will need Lawrie to hit to his
potential if they expect to erase their cold start.
- Prince Fielder smashed his way to
the AL Player of the Week Award for the second week of the season. The Tigers first baseman hit .632
with two home runs, four doubles, 11 RBI, and nine walks in six
- The Indians will be without
their leadoff hitter and center fielder for at least a couple of weeks, as
Michael Bourn was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a spike wound on his
right index finger. Bourn was off
to a hot start with a .303 batting average and .375 on-base percentage through
10 games. The speedy outfielder
also popped two home runs.
- Bourn wasn’t Cleveland’s
only loss. Starter Brett Myers will
not throw for two weeks after straining a ligament in his elbow. Cleveland fans, on the other hand, may not
consider it a loss as Myers has coughed up 10 home runs with an 8.02 earned-run
average in his first four appearances.
According to the Plain Dealer, no starter has ever surrendered 10 home
runs in his first four appearances.
- Power-hitting outfield prospect
Oswaldo Arcia was promoted to the Twins twice this past week, the second
time when outfielder Darin Mastroianni was placed on the 15-day disabled list
with a stress reaction in his left ankle.
Arcia singled in his first MLB at-bat and looks to make an impression in
his brief time with the Twins. Be
sure to tune in, as Arcia has the potential to become an All-Star in future
- Chicago will be without a power
bat in left field, as Dayan Viciedo will miss roughly three weeks with a
strained left oblique. Viciedo has
struggled to start the season with a .229 batting average and 16 strikeouts
compared to zero walks.
- The Astros optioned first
baseman Brett Wallace to Triple-A on Thursday after his 1-for-24 start to the
season. Wallace struck out a
staggering 17 times, though teammate Rick Ankiel has 23 strikeouts in only 11
- Albert Pujols is battling
inflammation of the tissue across the bottom of his foot that has relegated him
to DH duties, according to the LA Times.
The Times also quoted him in saying, “I’m dying. It’s hurting real bad.” The foot issue hasn’t stopped the future
Hall of Famer from besting his poor start from last season with a .317/.436/.508
- Matt Harrison is likely out until
after the All-Star break after needing back surgery to alleviate a herniated
disc. The Rangers starter
was already on the disabled list with a sore back.
- The second NL Player of the Week
award goes to… drum roll… Matt Harvey of the New York Mets. The exciting young hurler went 2-0 in
two starts this past week with a 1.20 earned-run average, flirting with a
no-hitter through six and two-third innings against the Twins. According to the New York Daily News,
Harvey is the
first pitcher since 1900 to win each of his first three starts of a season, with
at least 25 strikeouts and six or fewer hits allowed over those three
games. The talented right-hander is
set to have a remarkable season.
- Catcher John Buck blasted his
seventh home run to end the week for the Mets, which is already two more
than Mets catchers combined for all of last year.
- Brian McCann’s rehab from shoulder
surgery hit a slight delay when the catcher developed soreness in his right
wrist. Expected to only miss a day
or two, McCann was back on the field soon after. There is no timetable on McCann’s return
to the Braves lineup, though Evan Gattis has more than made up
offensively for his absence.
- Young phenom Bryce Harper required
an IV before the Wednesday night contest against the Marlins after missing one
game with the flu. Harper then
vomited between innings at one point.
None of that stopped the Nationals outfielder, as Harper went
4-for-5 with a double and RBI.
Harper later changed his name to Chuck
- Third base prospect Anthony Rendon
blistered the ball in spring training, leading to questions about his future
role with the Nationals.
Ryan Zimmerman’s placement on the 15-day disabled list with a strained
left hamstring allowed Rendon to make his major league debut on Sunday against
the Mets. The top prospect went
hitless in four at-bats.
- The Cubs and City of
Chicago came to
agreement this past week of a $500 million renovation deal for Wrigley
Field. According to the Chicago
Tribune, the deal includes more night games for the Cubs and a Jumbotron-like
screen in left field. Cubs owner
Tom Ricketts subsequently promised a World Series title, though the owner was
shockingly subtle in detailing when that might
- Cincinnati promoted starter Tony Cingrani to take Johnny Cueto’s place in the rotation. The left-hander had video-game like
numbers in three starts in Triple-A, as Cingrani held the opposition scoreless
in 14.1 innings with 26 strikeouts and only two walks. Cingrani’s strikeout rate continued in
his MLB debut, as he fanned eight batters over five innings and earned his first
MLB win against the Miami Marlins.
- The Cincinnati Inquirer examined
catcher Devin Mesoraco’s opportunity at cementing himself as the Reds
starting catcher here.
Starting catcher Ryan Hanigan was placed on the 15-day disabled list with
a strained left oblique and is off to a rough start with only three hits in 38
- Brewers starter Yovani Gallardo was in the news for all the wrong reasons this past week. The right-hander received a DUI after
blowing a 0.22, almost three times the legal limit of 0.08. The incident once again sparked the
debate about the lack of aggression Major League Baseball has had in dealing
with players and managers who receive DUIs. It begs the question at what point does
something seriously wrong have to happen for MLB to take
- Milwaukee brought back reliever
Francisco Rodriguez with a minor league deal that includes an opt-out clause if
he isn’t promoted within 30 days.
Though general manager Doug Melvin indicated to Tom Haudricourt of the
Journal Sentinel that the move had nothing to do with John Axford being removed
as closer, the Brewers need an improvement in the backend of
- A.J. Burnett had a game that he’ll
remember well into his later years, as the Pirates hurler recorded his
2,000th career strikeout on Wednesday night. Burnett held the Cardinals hitless
through 6 2/3 innings before allowing a double to Carlos Beltran.
- Mitchell Boggs became the third
closer in the NL Central to lose his job through the first two weeks of the
season. The Cardinals
pitcher has allowed 13 hits and seven walks in 8.2 innings with an
astronomical 12.46 earned-run average, as he has blown two
- Arizona suffered a major loss to
their infield after Aaron Hill went down with a slight surface fracture on his
left hand after sustaining a hit-by-pitch on April 9th. The second baseman will miss four to six
weeks. Shortstop Didi Gregorius was
promoted, as he looks to make an impression with his glove. Though he is considered at this point to
be a light hitter, Gregorius went on to homer in his first at-bat and now has
two home runs among six hits in his first three
- According to Bill Shaikin of the LA
Times, shortstop Hanley Ramirez vowed he would return to the Dodgers “way
sooner” than mid-May from thumb surgery.
Ramirez is hitting in the cage and taking ground balls, as Dodgers fans
cannot wait. Current Los
Angeles shortstops were hitting .167 through April
- As Dodgers fans received good
news on one injury front, the medical staff produced troubling news on
another. Starter Chad Billingsley
faces the possibility of reconstructive surgery as the right-hander is dealing
with pain in his throwing elbow.
According to Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times, Billingsley has been placed
on the 15-day disabled list and will have his elbow examined on
- Center fielder Cameron Maybin
swapped spots with third baseman Chase Headley, as the former went on the 15-day
disabled list with a sore right wrist.
Headley and his 31 home runs for the Padres made his season debut
on Wednesday by going 1-for-4 in the third spot of the
- Dexter Fowler of the Rockies already has more than half the
homers this year (seven) than he hit all of last year (13). 13 is the most he’s ever hit in a
season, a total he’s on pace to obliterate in 2013. Troy Renck of the Denver Post reviews
his success here.
Pierce Jefferson can
be reached via email at email@example.com. Follow him
on twitter (@MLBPJ).
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