Welcome to the Spring Training recap for March 7! Every day throughout Spring Training we’ll be providing a rundown of the top news and performances from the previous day’s games, and highlighting things to watch for in today’s matchups. Let’s dive into it.
- Tyler Beede will get a second opinion on his injured elbow on Monday. Beede has a flexor and UCL sprain and could undergo Tommy John surgery
- Adalberto Mondesi has yet to appear in a Spring Training game, but his recovery from shoulder surgery is still on schedule according to his doctor
- J.D. Davis is expected to return to the lineup for today’s game after recovering from a jammed shoulder
- Trey Mancini has undergone a “non-baseball medical procedure” and will miss “some time” according to Orioles manager Brandon Hyde
- Gary Sanchez is nursing a sore back, though manager Aaron Boone doesn’t consider it a serious issue. He will not take batting practice today
- Mookie Betts is recovering from a stomach illness
- Carlos Carrasco has right elbow soreness and is slowing down his throwing program
- Oscar Mercado was diagnosed with a mild left wrist strain and is day-to-day
- Giancarlo Stanton ran on a treadmill and is expected to return by late April from a calf strain
- Blake Snell is expected to pitch Monday after receiving a cortisone shot in his ailing left elbow
- Michael Fulmer has begun throwing from 100 feet in his recovery from Tommy John surgery
Top Hitting Performances
A popular sleeper at the moment due to his potentially elite combination of power and speed, Cordero has scuffled at the plate so far this spring, hitting just .214. Strikeouts continue to be an issue for him, as he now has six over his first 14 at-bats. To make matters worse, his primary competitor for outfield at-bats, Wil Myers, has been on fire so far, swatting three homers to this point. Hopefully this was the start of more impressive offensive showings from Cordero.
Miguel Sano (1B/3B, Minnesota Twins): 2-for-3, HR, 3 RBI, K
Sano has been a bit slow coming out of the gate, but his second home run of the spring was absolutely demolished, and certainly helps justify the hype he’s been getting as a potential 40+ home run bat this year.
— MLB (@MLB) March 7, 2020
Polanco had himself a nice day at the plate, bringing his early spring batting average up to .400. He’s got full-time at-bats locked down in the Pirates outfield, and if he’s fully recovered from the shoulder issues that plagued him last year there’s 20/15 upside here for the 28-year-old.
Ford drew the start at first base in this game and hit cleanup. With the recent spate of injuries the Yankees have suffered, there’s an outside shot that Ford could pick up consistent at-bats at DH and first base for the Yankees to begin the year, and he could be a useful asset for his power and on-base skills in deeper leagues.
Jose Ramirez (3B, Cleveland Indians): 1-for-3, HR, 2 RBI, K
Ramirez is carrying his strong finish to the 2019 season into the spring, as he now has two home runs and is boasting a .318 average. He hit third in this game, which should bode very well for his counting stat totals if he finds himself in that spot once the season begins.
Shed Long (2B, Seattle Mariners): 0-for-3
It was another rough day at the plate for Long, who hit leadoff in this game but saw his average for the spring drop to .114. There’s still sleeper potential here, but prolonged struggles might allow Dee Gordon to insert himself back into the second base picture.
Kevin Cron had himself a day, bashing his second home run this spring. While Christian Walker has started off slow, Cron will likely need an injury to crop up in order to garner a decent amount of at-bats this year.
Willy Adames (SS, Tampa Bay Rays): 2-for-2, R
Adames hit second in this game behind Austin Meadows, and boosted his average to .353 with this multi-hit outing. Adames has a firm grip on shortstop, and should be one of the few Rays who doesn’t get regularly platooned this year, so any strides forward in contact ability could go a long way.
Here was our list of starters to watch from yesterday’s games:
SPs to watch on TV today:
Eovladi: good cutters and upper 90s FB?
Thornton: great SL/CB & 4S command?
Voth: Lots o’ whiffs with 2ndary stuff? 93+ mph?
Price: Few sinkers? Good CHs?
Gallen: SL good? 93-95 up?
Luzardo: FB cmd?
— Pitcher List (@PitcherList) March 7, 2020
And here’s how they (and others) fared:
Jesus Luzardo (SP, Oakland Athletics): 3.1 IP, 2 Hits, ER, BB, 8 Ks
Luzardo was on fire yesterday, generating a ton of ugly swinging strikeouts with his breaking ball. His fastball topped out at 97 mph, and he had good control of it in this outing. Just filthy.
The future is now.
— Oakland A’s (@Athletics) March 7, 2020
Nate Eovaldi (SP, Boston Red Sox): 3.0 IP, 1 Hit, 0 ER, BB, 4 Ks
Eovaldi completely overpowered the Blue Jays in this one, blowing his fastball by batters and mixing in the splitter well. He has yet to give up an earned run this spring.
— Brendan (@brendan_camp) March 7, 2020
Voth looked sharp in this game, showing off the deep pitch mix that makes him such an intriguing back-end pitcher. His main competition for the fifth starter spot, Joe Ross, struggled in the Nationals’ other split-squad game. How this competition pans out over the next few weeks is worth keeping an eye on.
— Alex Fast (@AlexFast8) March 7, 2020
Price admitted to being incredibly nervous during his Dodgers spring debut, but didn’t show any nerves in this one, dominating the Rockies over three innings. With full feeling in his fingers after the removal of a cyst from his wrist this offseason, Price could be a huge pitching value in drafts this season.
— MLB (@MLB) March 7, 2020
Zach Gallen (SP, Arizona Diamondbacks): 3.2 IP, 5 Hits, 2 ER, 2 BB, 2 Ks
Gallen looked shaky against a Trout-less Angels offense, serving up a homer to Anthony Bemboom. His spring ERA is up to 5.63.
Thornton couldn’t build on the momentum of his first few strong spring outings and got knocked around by the Red Sox, though he did limit the damage by and large. He should still have an inside track on the Blue Jays fifth starter spot, especially with top prospect Nate Pearson looking like he’ll begin the year in the minors.
Matz hurled three perfect innings against a fairly full Nationals lineup. He had his slider working really well in this one, and has now given up just one run over his first six spring innings. Despite rumblings of Michael Wacha pushing him for the fifth starter role, Matz will likely claim sole possession of the final rotation spot with more outings like this.
Foltynewicz looked really sharp in this one, getting his pitch count up to 67 and generating plenty of whiffs. This was a nice rebound after his difficult debut against the Red Sox. He’ll look to build on his strong finish to 2019.
What to Watch for Today
SPs to watch on TV today:
Dakota: SLs for Whiffs?
PabLo: solid CBs?
Clarke Schmidt: Someone to consider mid-season for stream?
Verlander vs. Thor: YES PLEASE
Urias: CBs/SLs for whiffs?
Lyles: Good CBs?
Sheffield: FB command + good CH?
Paddack: new CB?
Shelby: 94mph velo?
— Pitcher List (@PitcherList) March 8, 2020
Featured image by Justin Paradis (@freshmeatcomm on Twitter)