MLB News and Notes: Week of May 14
Fathers get a lot of the credit for instilling a love of baseball in their children, but for many of us, our mothers also played a crucial role. Considering the number of hours many of us spent playing baseball growing up, moms made a lot of this possible. That is why it is really nice to see MLB and their players celebrate Mother’s Day the way they do. Players, coaches, and managers proved that real men wear pink, and that color, along with supporting breast cancer research, unified every MLB team, regardless of the names on the front of their uniforms.
Robinson Cano left Seattle’s game at Detroit on Sunday with a broken right hand after being hit by a pitch. The Mariners announced later Sunday that Cano has a fractured fifth metacarpal. The team has not disclosed how long the eight-time All-Star will be sidelined, but early reports say that, based on the type of injury, it will likely take several weeks for Cano to return. Andrew Romine replaced Cano at second base following the hit by pitch.
At the beginning of the year, much was made about the use of the humidor and the effect it might have on hitters in Arizona, such as Diamondback slugger Paul Goldschmidt. The first baseman is struggling, but it doesn’t appear to have much to do with the humidor. In fact, Goldschmidt has not looked like his usual self. He has been fouling off or swinging through pitches he used to crush. He has been taking late swings that suggest he might have been guessing – and guessing wrong. He has been expanding the zone and swinging over the top of pitches in the dirt. That said, he is too good to let this go on for long and would make a fine buy-low candidate in fantasy.
The start to Paul Goldschmidt's 2018 season has been unexpectedly pedestrian. https://t.co/K8YQk3cSGM
— Arizona Sports (@AZSports) May 12, 2018
The Boston Red Sox announced that second baseman Dustin Pedroia will start a rehab assignment for Triple-A Pawtucket early this week. Pedroia underwent a cartilage restoration procedure on his left knee in October. He seems to be on pace for a return by the end of May and would make a fine stash for fantasy owners who have room on their rosters.
The Red Sox also breathed a little sigh of relief after pitcher David Price made his first start in nine days and allowed two runs and five hits in 5.1 innings. He walked three and struck out six for his first victory since April 17. Price skipped Wednesday’s start against the Yankees after experiencing numbness during a bullpen session on Sunday, and the veteran hurler had stated that video games might have contributed to his carpal tunnel. They are not, however, to blame for the origin of the swelling in his left thumb, index finger, and middle finger. Price said Thursday that he would stop playing the popular game “Fortnite” in the clubhouse to avoid the distraction.
— 105.7 The Fan (@1057TheFan) May 12, 2018
He may not end up being fantasy relevant, but baseball fans everywhere are keeping an eye on and rooting for Tampa Bay pitcher Jonny Venters. This is because Venters has not pitched in a major league game for more than 5 ½ years, during which the former All-Star reliever endured three elbow surgeries and thousands of hours of grueling rehabilitation. His stuff isn’t quite what it once was, but it’s still good enough. He throws low-90s sinkers now, topping out at 94. However, he’s no longer throwing the 97-mph “turbo sinkers” he threw back in his peak years with the Braves, which some hitters said was like trying to hit a bowling ball. So far this year, Venters has pitched 5.1 innings and has compiled a 1.69 ERA with a 0.56 WHIP.
Braves pitcher Sean Newcomb has given up just five hits in 20 scoreless innings while winning his past three starts, all on the road. Newcomb is 4-0 with a 1.70 ERA and .182 opponents’ average in his past seven starts. He’s recorded 48 strikeouts with 18 walks and allowed only three home runs in 42.1 innings in that period. He suddenly looks like the front-line pitcher the Braves and many fantasy owners thought he could become when the Braves acquired him 2 1/2 years ago.
If you like prospects, keep an eye on this name: Juan Soto. The Nationals have promoted the hot-hitting outfield prospect to Double-A Harrisburg. Only 19 years old, Soto got off to a blazing hot start, batting .373/.486/.814 in 74 plate appearances with Single-A Hagerstown and .371/.466/.790 in 73 plate appearances with High-A Potomac. MLB Pipeline currently ranks him as the No. 2 prospect in the Nationals’ system behind fellow outfielder Victor Robles.
— Jonathan Mayo (@JonathanMayo) May 13, 2018
It may not be worthy of being in the same sentence as Joe DiMaggio, but Phillies center fielder Odubel Herrera extended his on-base streak to 40 consecutive games after he smacked a first-inning home run during Friday’s game against the Mets. On Sunday, Herrera had a walk in the first inning to extend the streak to 41 games.
Keynan Middleton was forced to leave Sunday’s game against the Twins due to right elbow discomfort. He is scheduled for an MRI on Monday. The Angels would continue with their previous committee that includes Jim Johnson and Justin Anderson.
The Rangers announced that Adrain Beltre re-aggravated his left hamstring injury, which had caused him to already go on the disabled list this season. Beltre left Sunday’s 6-1 loss to the Astros at Minute Maid Park in the seventh inning after appearing to move awkwardly on a play at third base. Isiah Kiner-Falefa will presumably pick up more playing time in the Rangers’ infield if Beltre has to miss time.
The MRI on the injured left wrist of Tigers’ third baseman Jeimer Candelario came back clean on Sunday. He’s still considered day-to-day, though, and may require a couple of extra days off to manage the issue. The injury will reportedly require a surgical procedure in the offseason, but the plan is for Candelario to continue to play through the pain this season.
Yoan Moncada will return from the disabled list prior to Tuesday’s game against the Pirates. The young second baseman ended up missing only the minimum 10 days with the minor hamstring injury. He is hitting .263/.359/.509 with six home runs and four steals on four attempts in 29 games this season.
New York Mets pitcher Jacob deGrom lasted just one inning in his return from the disabled list. DeGrom needed 45 pitches to get through a scoreless and hitless first, which included 20 foul balls. New York said he was removed as a precaution because of the length of the inning and the 59-minute rain delay that preceded it. Monitor DeGrom to see if there are any lingering effects of the hyperextended right elbow that cause him to miss his last start.