MLB In Full Bloom - Edwin Encarnacion Hits 14th May Home Run - 5/28/2014

Share

The Toronto Blue Jays are the hottest team in baseball, so it’s no surprise that the hottest hitter in baseball is on their roster. On Tuesday night, Edwin Encarnacion belted his 14th home run in May. That's correct - fourteen homers in May, not for the season. It’s hard to believe that this is the same guy who went the first 19 games of the season without a home run. Encarnacion finished April with just two home runs, but he now has 16 for the season to close within one of major league home run leader Nelson Cruz. Ten of the fourteen homers have come in the last 12 games, and he has four multi-homer games over the last 20 days. Even more impressive is that Encarnacion is batting .340 (16-for-47) with two doubles, 10 homers and 15 RBIs over his past 12 games. The Blue Jays are finally getting the pitching that they so desperately missed last year and with the best offense in baseball, the Jays are going to remain a factor in the AL East as long as that starting pitching continues to be effective.

MLB NEWS & NOTES

  • Tim Hudson threw seven shutout innings in a gem against the Cubs on Tuesday night. Hudson allowed six hits, racked up five strikeouts, and didn't issue a walk. Hudson has enjoyed a strong start to his Giants' career, going 5-2 with a 1.92 ERA over 10 starts.
  • Mark Reynolds went 2-for-4 with a home run and he scored the winning run in the 10th inning as the Brewers defeated the Orioles 7-6 on Tuesday night in Milwaukee. Reynolds took Orioles starter Wei-Yin Chen deep for his 12th home run of the season and while Reynolds will never provide a strong batting average, his power numbers are certainly useful to fantasy owners.
  • Ben Revere went 1-for-5 with a solo home run in Tuesday's loss to the Rockies. Revere entered the game homerless in 1,466 plate appearances and went 0-for-3 before hitting his first career home run in the seventh inning off of Boone Logan. Revere has a respectable .288 BA with 12 stolen bases so far this season.
  • According to Bruce Levine of CBSChicago.com reports that the Orioles "appear to be the leading team of interest in the Jeff Samardzija sweepstakes." The Cubs and Orioles would certainly match up for a deal, as the Orioles could use a starter to potentially put them over the top and have a group of pitching prospects the Cubs would be looking for. Dylan Bundy, Kevin Gausman, Hunter Harvey and Eduardo Rodriguez are all arguably top-100 prospects and at least one of them would surely head to Chicago in a deal. Samardzija is also drawing interest from the Blue Jays, among many other teams.
  • A.J. Pollock hit leadoff for the Diamondbacks for the third straight game Tuesday. Pollock has spent most of the season towards the bottom of the order, but with a .290 batting average he could no longer be denied a move up. Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson said he is not certain if Pollock will remain there long-term, but for now Pollock will be in the lead-off spot.
  • Carl Crawford (ankle) has been diagnosed with a left ankle sprain and it's unclear how long he'll be out this time. Crawford will be placed on the 15-day disabled list after he rolled the ankle in the eighth inning and limped off the field. He was replaced by Scott Van Slyke, although Matt Kemp was mysteriously not in the lineup for a fifth straight day and also wasn't chosen to replace Crawford. All speculation here, but another option to fill in while Crawford is out is Joc Peterson who is raking at Triple-A and he is on the 40-man roster.
  • 50 Cent was on the mound, but not on the money on Tuesday night in New York before the Mets hosted the Pirates. Standing on the rubber 60 feet, 6 inches from home plate, 50 Cent wound up and launched a left-handed toss that sailed way wide of Mets catcher Anthony Recker. The ball bounced to the backstop and nearly nicked a cameraman standing not all that far from the Mets' on-deck circle.

MLB In Full Bloom - Samardzija FINALLY Gets A Win - 5/27/2014

Share

Jeff Samardzija received a beer shower Monday, a tradition typically reserved for a pitcher who earns his first major league victory. But with the Cubs were so relieved to end their ace's 16-start winless drought, it was time to let the suds fly. After the win, Samardzija recalled his first big-league dousing, which came on July 27, 2008, and considering how long it had been since he earned a victory, that drought seemed almost as long as the time between beer showers. Samardzija (1.68) no longer owns the majors' lowest ERA, but he no doubt impressed several scouts representing the Red Sox and Twins among others who watched him alternate effectively with an 86-mph slider and 96-mph fastball while finally earning a victory.

MLB NEWS & NOTES

  • Hyun-Jin Ryu took a perfect game into the eighth inning Monday and then barely held on for the win after being charged with three runs in 7 1/3 innings. Ryu reached on an error and came around to score in the bottom of the seventh, which may have led to a shaky eighth. Ryu gave up a double and a single before being pulled and Brian Wilson came on and retired just one of the four hitters he faced. He allowed the two inherited runners to score and it forced Dodgers manager Don Mattingly to call on Kenley Jansen in a 4-3 game. Jansen got the Dodgers out of a bases loaded situation by striking out Brandon Phillips.
  • George Springer continued his assault of big league pitching Monday, hitting a pair of doubles and a home run in the Astros' 9-2 victory over the Royals. Springer went 4-for-4 with three RBI and five runs scored. Springer entered this evening hitting .291 with 18 RBI, 14 runs scored and seven home runs in May.
  • Josh Hamilton (thumb) was diagnosed with a bone bruise in his left thumb on Monday. The Angels have him listed as day-to-day and will try to resume batting practice on Wednesday. There was concern that Hamilton re-injured his surgically-repaired thumb, but the bone bruise diagnosis confirmed that this is not a major setback. It obviously makes it unlikely that Hamilton will return later this week as originally planned.
  • Gio Gonzalez (shoulder) stretched out his long toss program to 120 feet on Monday, and Nats manager Matt Williams says he's feeling good. It doesn't look like Gonzalez will be ready to pitch when he's eligible to come off the disabled list on June 1, but a return to the rotation in the first week of June is certainly possible.
  • Cliff Lee (elbow) was evaluated by Phillies' medical personnel on Monday and hasn't been cleared to resume throwing. The plan calls for him to be reevaluated in three days. Lee was diagnosed with a Grade 1/2 flexor strain of his left elbow earlier this month and there's no clear timetable for his return.
  • A.J. Ellis (ankle) was placed on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to May 25 with a right ankle sprain. Ellis just returned from knee surgery less than two weeks ago, but he apparently suffered the injury in Josh Beckett's no-hitter celebration on Sunday. He stepped on Drew Butera's mask during the celebration. Tim Federowicz will take his spot on the active roster.
  • The Chicago Cubs are in the middle of a massive rebuilding project and opened the season with a payroll around $90 million, which places them in the bottom third of the league in payroll. The MLBPA is concerned about the Cubs lack of spending and how it is effecting player markets. The Cubs topped out with a $144 million payroll in 2009, but have lowered it in each of the last five years. The club has made some modest free agent signings, but have not made a big splash in recent years.

Page 18 of 194