I attended Sunday's Orioles-Dodgers game at Camden Yards and have to say that the Orioles fans are a classy bunch. There were more Dodger fans in the stadium than I expected and I did not see any Orioles fans give the Dodgers fans a hard time. I wore by Dodgers hat and Dodgers hoodie sweatshirt (it was cold in Baltimore), and no one gave me any grief whatsoever.
I actually sat next to a Dodgers fan and we were chatting throughout the game, about the Dodgers problems with hitting with runners in scoring position, their decimated pitching staff (remember when they had 3 starters too many?), when will Dee Gordon get called up, among other topics. His name: Jerry Sands. No. Not that Jerry Sands.
Allen Webster has a solid major league debut
The Red Sox received pitching prospect Allen Webster in the huge deal last August that sent Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford and others to the Dodgers. He has been a Top 100 prospect according to Baseball America in each of the last two seasons. He was called up to pitch in the second game of the double header vs the Royals. He pitched well, giving up 3 runs, just 2 earned runs, both on solo home runs, on 5 hits, a walk and 5 strikeouts. He needed 84 pitches to get through 6 innings of work, and was in line for the win had the Red Sox bullpen preserved the one run lead. He will be sent down after the game, but should be up later in the year when the team needs a spot starter, or their pitching rotation suffers an injury.
Make sure you check out Jason Hunt's article on Webster here.
Anthony Rendon's debut
With Ryan Zimmerman hitting the 15 day DL with a hamstring injury, the Nationals called up third base prospect Anthony Rendon on Saturday. He made his major league debut on Sunday, going 0-4 with two strikeouts, but he did see 19 pitches in his 4 at bats. Not what you want to see in his major league debut, but think about this: he has had just 258 minor league at bats before his call up, 116 of which came above High A. He will play third base and probably bat in the six spot in the Nationals lineup. I assume that he will be sent back down to AA once Zimmerman is healthy. He should have an impact on fantasy rosters beginning in 2014.
Albert Pujols hurting
Angels first baseman/DH Albert Pujols is having a much better April this season than he did last season. But, right now, he is dealing with plantar fascitis, which according to Pujols is hurting him real bad. Here is more from Bill Shaikin at the Los Angeles Times:
With Albert Pujols trying to play despite an injury to his left foot, the Angels are prepared for him to be limited to designated hitter for an extended period of time.
"I'm dying," Pujols said Sunday. "It's hurting real bad."
Pujols started at DH for the fourth consecutive game Sunday, and he now has started more games at DH than at first base.
The team has talked about the possibility of placing Pujols on the DL, so don't be surprised if they follow through with that decision. Angels GM Jerry Dipoto stated that they will continue to treat his injury until he says he cannot tolerate the pain any longer.
Here is what else happened during Sunday's games:
Who has the better OBP: Joey Votto or Shin-Soo Choo? If you answered Votto, you would be wrong. Choo went 2-2 with a walk, 2 runs scored and an RBI, raising his triple slash line to .382-.523-.632 with 3 HRs, 17 runs, 9 RBI and 2 stolen bases. He has reached base in 9 of his last 10 plate appearances. By the way, Votto's OBP is .522.
Blue Jays catcher J.P. Arencibia has plenty of power, and it was on full display on Sunday, as he went 2-4 with 2 runs and 2 RBI. Arencibia now has 7 HRs and 13 RBI this season, while hitting .250-.260-.611. He is providing fantasy owners with exactly what they drafted him for-power.
Mets starter Dillon Gee had his best start of the season on Sunday, shutting out the Nationals for 5.2 innings on 3 hits, 3 walks and 6 strikeouts. Gee has struggled in his last two starts, giving up 12 runs on 17 hits in just 7.2 innings but he slienced the Nationals lineup. He is now 1-3 with a 5.95 ERA and 1.58 WHIP, and I see him improving upon those early season stats as the season grows older.
Is it time for Josh Reddick to shave the beard? Reddick has struggled to start the 2013 season, hitting just .113-.226-.208 with 1 HR, 7 runs, 8 RBI and 5 stolen bases. He hit 32 home runs last season and I have to wonder if that will be looked at as his career year over the next few seasons.
Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp seems to be breaking out of his season long slump, as he went 3-5 with a run, RBI and a stolen base on Sunday, and is now hitting .235-.270-.294 on the season with no home runs, 7 runs, 6 RBI and 3 stolen bases. Over his last 10 games, he is 11-38 with 3 stolen bases and a 12-1 strikeout to walk rate.
Former Cardinals closer Mitchell Boggs entered a 3-3 game in the 8th inning last night and proceeded to give up 4 runs, 3 on a long home run to Phillies catcher Erik Kratz. It is safe to assume that Boggs should be dropped in all leagues at this point, as he has been way too inconsistent and will not see any save opportunities for the very near future. Edward Mujica and Trevor Rosenthal are the top two candidates for save opportunities in the Cardinals bullpen going forward.
This from Derrick Goold at the St. Louis Post Dispatch last evening, after Boggs blow up:
Oooofff. Do they send him into a long man role now? Or AAA?
The Reds place catcher Ryan Hanigan on the DL on Sunday with a thumb injury, and fantasy owners thank Dusty Baker for doing so. Hanigan has struggled at the plate this season, hitting just .079-.182-.079 in his 38 at bats. Taking his place on the Reds roster is veteran catcher Corky Miller who has zero fantasy value. Taking over the starting catching duties is Devin Mesorac, who is hitting .259-.382-.370 with 6 runs and 5 RBI in 27 at bats.
The Dodgers placed starter Chad Billingsley on the 15 day DL with elbow pain. Billz put off Tommy John surgery this offseason and instead elected to treat his elbow using some sort of injection. The team called up Stephen Fife to take his spot in the rotation.