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Picked Off: Spring Training Boxscores 3/9/2009

On the day we learn Los Angeles Angels' SP Ervin Santana has a sprained medial collateral ligament and will begin the season on the D.L., rookie hurler Nick Adenhart throws three shutout innings against the San Francisco Giants.  One would think Adenhart is going to get a spot in the rotation now.  However, the current efforts of 3B Brandon Wood might, just might, make current 3B Chone Figgins available in exchange for rotation help.

Isn't there a team who just lost their 3B for a couple months and could use a player whose contractual obligations didn't extend past this season?

SP Tommy Hanson, Atlanta Braves:  While Matt Wieters and David Price suck all the air of out of the room, neither is eligible to win the 2009 NL ROY although I think Matt Wieters could just based on some inter-league games.  Facing a split-squad Phillies team anchored by Ryan Howard and Jayson Werth, Hanson struck out seven Phils in four innings of work.

SP Wade Davis, Tampa Bay Rays:  Davis was hammered by a Red Sox line-up that must have had an exemption to have fewer than three regular players in the line-up, and those regulars were Jason varitek and Julio Lugo!  Following Jason Hammel's pounding yesterday, can some of the talk about David Price beginning the season in AAA cease?

The Rays do not have the wiggle room to employ a pre-2008 strategy.  This team is no longer the loser whose main focus was preserving as many controllable player years as possible.  It is now in a death match against the Yankees and Red Sox for the division/Wild Card.  Every game counts.

OF Wladimir Balentien, Seattle Mariners:  After Visa problems delayed Balentien's Spring, he has hit two home runs in his first three days.  The signing of Ken Griffey, Jr. essentially ended Balentien's chance to get full-time ABs.  However, Balentien should be able to see part-time work as a back-up outfielder and DH as long as the Mariner's make a commitment to 2nd-year hitter Jeff Clement at catcher.