Baseball is Back!!

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Baseball is back! The 2013 season has begun and it did so with style! If Monday is any indication, we are headed for a big year by some big arms — and some big-name rookies. While most baseball fans might have been waiting to see how many strikeouts Stephen Strasburg would record in Washington's opener on Monday, Bryce Harper hit two home runs in his first two at-bats and the day ended with Felix Hernandez throwing a gem in Oakland. Here are some other headlines from a banner Opening Day! 

 MLB News & Notes

  • Ryan Ludwick sustained a dislocated shoulder Monday and will undergo an MRI on Tuesday in order to discover the extent of the injury. Ludwick is sure to find himself on the disabled list in the near future. The MRI will reveal how long he will remain out of the lineup, but Chris Heisey is next in line to start in left field.
  • Clayton Kershaw had one of his best performances of his career as he struck out seven and tossed a complete game four-hit shutout against the San Francisco Giants on Monday. In addition to the strong showing on the mound, Kershaw took George Kontos deep for his first homer as a big leaguer Monday.
  • Carlos Marmol was pulled from Monday's season opener against the Pirates after he retired just one of the four batters he faced, but Cubs manager Dale Sveum said that Marmol is still the Cubs closer. Marmol was pulled from the save situation after hitting a batter and giving up a hit and a walk. Kyuji Fujikawa came in to retire Russell Martin and earn the save. Marmol is on an extremely short leash with Cubs' management and Fujikawa very well may end up with more save opportunities if Marmol struggles continue.
  • Jeff Samardzija was dominant as he earned the win on Opening Day. He allowed just two hits and walked one threw eight innings of shutout ball against the Pirates. His next start will come Sunday against Tim Hudson and the Braves.
  • Bryce Harper became the youngest player to homer twice on Opening Day. He hit solo home runs in both of his first two at-bats of the season. Harper finds himself in a lineup full of protection and he should see his RBI and run totals increase this year.
  • Pablo Sandoval (elbow) went 2-for-4 with a pair of singles Monday, but admitted that his right elbow still bothers him when he hits left-handed.  Sandoval looked pretty good for a player who has not played much baseball in the past few weeks because of elbow trouble.
  • Carl Crawford hit leadoff in his Dodgers' debut Monday against the Giants and went 2-for-4 with a double and a run scored. Crawford appears to be settling in since the last few weeks of spring training and he seems to be close to 100 percent to begin the season.
  • Gerardo Parra went 4-for-5 with three doubles in Monday's win over the Cardinals. Fantasy owners have to be pleased with Parra's four hit night, but the downside to hitting leadoff is the RBI opportunities are not there.
  • Felix Hernandez got off to a good start Monday, as he shutout the Oakland Athletics with eight outs in 7 2/3 innings. King Felix looked great in spring training and it carried over to Opening Day. He'll be a fantasy ace again in 2013.