MLB In Full Bloom - Gregory Polanco's Big Arrival - 6/10/2014

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Many people expected Gregory Polanco to be recalled late last week, but on Friday when the move was expected to be announced the Pittsburgh Pirates there was nothing. Polanco made the announcement Monday that he's headed to Pittsburgh. Polanco will be activated before Tuesday's game, and there's no reason to think he won't be in the starting lineup for the game against the Cubs. This roster move had to happen sooner than Pirates management wanted to due to Neil Walker going on the 15-day disabled list who underwent an appendectomy. Josh Harrison will now play second base and the outfield will consist of Starling Marte, Andrew McCutchen, and Polanco. Polanco batted .347 with 7 home runs and 15 stolen bases at Triple-A Indianapolis before the promotion, and he's been batting leadoff in recent days to get a feel for setting the table atop a lineup. Fantasy owners have been drooling over Polanco and have great expectations for the 22-year old outfielder, but the struggles of Oscar Taveras and George Springer need to temper those expectations just a bit. Fantasy owners expecting the next coming of Mike Trout or Yasiel Puig may be disappointed. But the potential is sky high, and Polanco should immediately be owned and started in all leagues.

MLB NEWS & NOTES

MLB In Full Bloom - Should Manny Machado Be Suspended? - 6/9/2014

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Manny Machado will turn 22 years old a month from now and he is one of the brightest rising stars in baseball. But age is no excuse for his bush league move in Sunday's 11-1 loss to the Oakland Athletics in which he clearly intended to throw his bat at Oakland pitcher Fernado Abad. The bat ended up flying down the third-base line instead of toward the pitcher's mound, though Machado claimed the bat slipped out of his hands. No one is buying that story and Machado should be suspended for at least five games. Machado's bat throwing was the culmination of a series of events that began Friday night, when Athletics third baseman Josh Donaldson tagged out Machado on a ground ball with two outs in the third inning, leading to a benches-clearing incident when Machado took exception to the play. Normally, a third baseman would throw to first on that play, and the tag appeared to catch Machado off-balance and he flung his helmet to the ground as he fell and had words with Donaldson. But Donaldson didn't do anything wrong and he obviously has the right to tag Machado. It's time for Adam Jones or Chris Davis to sit down with Machado and have some "guy time" and tell the young third baseman that there are better ways to handle these situations in the future.

MLB NEWS & NOTES

  • Jon Singleton went 2-for-6 with a grand slam as the Astros pounded the Twins 14-5 on Sunday. Singleton's ninth inning blast was the second grand slam of the game for the Astros, following Chris Carter's shot in the seventh. This was Singleton's second home run in six games since being recalled, with all six of his runs batted in coming on homers.
  • Paul Goldschmidt went 1-for-2 with a home run and a stolen base as the Diamondbacks defeated the Braves 6-5 on Sunday. Goldschmidt's homer has still not yet landed that he off Braves reliever David Hale in the seventh inning. Goldschmidt has a .303 BA with 12 home runs and he ranks among the league leaders in most every offensive category in what's turning out to be another big year.
  • Jordan Zimmermann struck out 12 Padres hitters in a two-hit shutout on Sunday afternoon in San Diego. It was Zimmermann's second straight scoreless outing, but Sunday's effort was on another level. The Padres didn't get a hit until the sixth inning, and Zimmermann didn't walk a batter on the afternoon. He's now got a 5-2 record and 3.17 ERA in 13 starts and will face the Cardinals in his next start.
  • Mitch Moreland (ankle) will undergo surgery on his left ankle this Wednesday. It's yet another major hit for the Rangers, who will lose their second first baseman in a month for an extended period of time. Moreland could miss up to three months following the surgery, which would put him in line for an early-September activation, provided his rehab goes as planned. Donnie Murphy will get the start at first base Sunday, and could be headed for more playing time.
  • Starling Marte went 0-for-3 with his 14th stolen base Sunday in his first start since Monday. Marte is batting .100 (5-for-50) since May 22. If Marte continues to struggle, he'll continue to lose playing time and could potentially suffer a demotion to Triple-A.
  • The San Francisco Giants completed their fourth sweep of the season on Sunday after they swept a three game series from the New York Mets. The Giants have now won 14 of 17 games to build baseball's best record at 42-21, and they own a 9 1/2 game lead over the rival Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL West. Even the World Series team of 2012 and 2010 were never on a roll like this team this year.
  • Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel was selected by the San Diego Padres in the 28th round of the Major League Baseball draft Saturday -- the 837th player taken. Manziel had multiple Division I offers to play baseball. He was a legitimate shortstop and clearly could have played in college. The Padres have until July 15th, but Manziel says he is 100% focused on playing quarterback for the Browns. All of you that are hoping to see Johnny Baseball probably won't get that chance anytime soon.

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