The Atlanta Braves are rolling and I'm here to tell you why their most recent call up and their most recent signing will get them back into the playoffs this year.
Before I get to who they called up and who they signed let me get to who they have. Behind the plate they have Kurt Suzuki and Tyler Flowers. Kurt Suzuki is hitting .327 and already has 4 home runs. Suzuki also have 3 doubles on the year. Tyler Flowers started the year on the disabled list and is set to start his rehab assignment in Triple A today. At first base the Braves have Freddie Freeman who is a beast at the plate. Freeman already has 4 home runs and 8 doubles plus he's hitting .296. At second base Atlanta has Ozzie Albies who is probably the most underrated second baseman in all of baseball. Ozzie is hitting .274, has 6 home runs, 2 triple, and 9 doubles. At shortstop the Braves have Dansby Swanson who like Albies is clearly underrated. Swanson is currently hitting .326, has 2 home runs, has 2 stolen bases, has 1 triple, and hit 8 doubles. Right now at third base the Braves has Ryan Flaherty. Flaherty is hitting .313, has 1 home run, 5 doubles, and 3 stolen bases. From my knowledge the only reason why the Braves picked up Ryan Flaherty is so Rio Ruiz can get more at bats in the minors. In Right Field the Braves have Nick Markakas. Markakas is hitting .310, has 3 home runs, and 5 doubles. At Center Field the Braves currently have Ender Inciarte who is hitting .258, has no home runs, 2 doubles, and 7 stolen bases. The Braves have Preston Tucker in left field. Tucker is hitting .254, has 3 home runs, and has 6 doubles.
Now that I was able to show you who Atlanta has in their everyday lineup I'm here to show you where Atlanta's new call up will fit in the Braves lineup and what I'm expecting from him. The Atlanta Braves new call up is Ronald Acuna JR. Ronald Acuna JR has got off to a slow start but let's not worry about what he's done this year in terms of batting average which is only .232 in the minors. He already has 1 homeruns, 2 doubles, and 4 stolen bases. In 2015 he hit .269, had 4 home runs, 4 triples, 14 doubles, and stole 16 bases. In 2016 Acuna hit .312, had 4 home runs, 2 triples, 2 doubles, and stole 14 bases. In 2017 he hit for .325, had 21 home runs, 8 triples, 31 doubles, and stole 44 bases. This year in spring training he proved that he can hit against big league pitching and steal against big league catching as he hit .432, had 4 home runs, 1 double, and stole 4 bases. Looking at Acuna's numbers I expect him to play center field. He's a threat on the base path with his speed and he can probably be a threat at the plate with his power. He would make a good lead off or even 2 hole hitter.
The new Atlanta Braves signed player Jose Bautista what is there to say about him? The guy can hit for power and that'll be another plus in the Braves power lineup. The thing about this lineup is that Bautista doesn't even have to come in and have the pressure of being a 3 hole hitter. He can probably come in and bat lower in the lineup and produce as a 5th or 6th in the order hitter. There are plenty of talks about Bautista coming in and playing at 3rd so that will be interesting to see how he fairs at that position.
With as good as this lineup is I'm going to show you why this team can be good for years to come after this year is over. The Braves new call up is only 20 years old, Freddie Freeman is 28 years old, Ozzie Albies is 21, Dansby Swanson is 24, Ender Inciarte is 27, and Preston Tucker is 27. One guy who is about to be called up as well some time this year Rio Ruiz who is 23.
I'm loving what the Braves can do this year and looking at how young these players are if you can lock up the youth for years to come that's 7 position players who aren't even 30 and are very talented which is a good formula for a possible dynasty in years to come.
Wednesday, April 25, 2018
Tuesday, April 10, 2018
Zack Godley is off to a great start, and so are the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Godley pitched seven scoreless innings, Paul Goldschmidt had an RBI triple and the Diamondbacks beat the San Francisco Giants 2-1 on Monday night.
The Diamondbacks won for the sixth time in seven games and matched the best start in franchise history through 10 games. They're 8-2 for the first time since 2008.
Godley (2-0) struck out nine and allowed four hits and no walks. He's allowed just one run in 14 innings this season.
"It's been really good so far just being able to execute pitches," Godley said. "The biggest thing is our defense has been awesome."
Godley was pretty good, too, attacking with a biting curveball that had the Giants batters off-balance all night.
"They were just aggressive," Godley said. "Their aggressiveness played right into what we wanted to do going into the game."
Goldschmidt tripled to right-center off Giants starter Derek Holland (0-2), highlighting a two-run first inning. A.J. Pollock's sacrifice fly scored Goldschmidt.
Holland allowed two runs, struck out eight and walked one in six innings of two-hit ball in his second start with his new team.
After giving up the triple to Goldschmidt, the 31-year-old left-hander retired 17 of his final 18 batters.
The Giants' best scoring chance off Godley came in the fifth, when Buster Posey reached on a fielder's choice and went to third on Brandon Crawford's one-out single. But Godley got Hunter Pence to pop out to first and Gregor Blanco on a grounder to second.
"He did everything we needed him to do on a night when we might've been a little short in the bullpen," Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo said.
"The big double plays, making pitches when his back was against the wall and not giving in and making quality pitches all night long, that was what he did."
The Giants scored their only run in the eighth when Crawford doubled leading off the inning and scored on Blanco's infield grounder.
Archie Bradley pitched a 1-2-3 ninth for his first save.
The Giants were 0 for 4 with runners in scoring position. They're .125 average (3 for 24) batting with runners in scoring position is the worst in the majors.
"Our guys were battling," Holland said. "It was a pitcher's duel going in and he lasted longer than I did. Just processing this game, they were hitting the ball. They made contact, found some holes, hit mistakes."
The Giants activated RHP Tyler Beede, and the 24-year-old right-hander will start Tuesday's game for his major league debut. Beede, a 2014 first-round pick, will pitch in place of RHP Johnny Cueto, whose start was pushed back to Wednesday. In a corresponding move, the Giants optioned RHP Roberto Gomez to Triple-A Sacramento.
Diamondbacks: OF Steven Souza Jr., on the DL with a right pectoral strain, complained of discomfort Sunday after playing in a simulated game in which he homered twice in seven at-bats and threw from over 100 feet. An MRI showed fluid in the area of the injury. "This is part of the process," Lovullo said. "I do not consider this a setback whatsoever." ... 3B Jake Lamb (left shoulder AC joint sprain) took dry swings and did some running and throwing Monday. He'll ramp up baseball activities Tuesday.
Giants: RHP Jeff Samardzija (right pectoral strain) pitched three innings in a simulated game and is expected to throw make a rehab start later this week. He could be activated next week.
LHP Patrick Corbin (2-0, 1.38 ERA) will pitch Tuesday's game for Arizona against Beede.
Monday, April 9, 2018
Pitcher Clayton Richard's no-doubt, three-run homer that reached the second deck at Coors Field helped the San Diego Padres withstand Carlos Gonzalez's disputed home run for the Colorado Rockies.
Richard connected for his third career homer as part of a five-run fourth inning in San Diego's 7-6 win over the Colorado Rockies on Monday night.
He drove the first pitch he saw from Jon Gray (1-2) above the Rockies bullpen in right-center. Carlos Asuaje followed Richard with a home run, the second time this season the Padres have gone deep in successive at-bats.
"Clayton really got us going (offensively)," Padres manager Andy Green said. "That's not actually what you expect to happen. That ball was absolutely crushed."
Richard, who last homered Aug. 27 at Miami, said his towering home run was pretty much a stroke of good fortune.
"I got lucky. Let's be real," he said.
Richard (1-1) allowed four runs in five innings. Brad Hand struck out the side in the ninth for his third save.
Ian Desmond, Chris Iannetta and Gonzalez homered for the Rockies. Gonzalez's two-run drive came in the sixth off Jordan Lyles, pulled the Rockies within 7-6 and led to the ejection of Padres manager Andy Green.
Left fielder Cory Spangenberg made a leaping attempt at the wall and actually had the ball in his glove for an instant, even as a fan tried simultaneously to make a barehanded catch. The fan appeared to make some contact with the glove and may have even gotten a hand in the mitt before backing his hands away as Spangenberg dropped back to the ground.
Spangenberg's dangling glove hit the top of the wall and the ball bounced out, dropping into the stands. The homer was upheld on replay review, and Green was ejected after vehemently arguing over what he saw as fan interference.
"I've had calls overturned on us plenty of times when a fan's finger or hands were over the railing and they touched the player's glove or the ball and both of those things happened," Green said.
Spangenberg, with his back to the wall, played the ball well and timed his jump perfectly. He was dumbfounded when he came back down to the ground and realized the ball wasn't in his glove.
"I felt it go in my glove and as I was bringing it back I felt something un-lodge it," he said. "I went to throw it back in and I realized it wasn't there. ... From my perspective, I thought I saw and felt a hand touch the ball but I guess that's not what they saw. It was a big home run at the time but we were able to escape with a win and that's that counts."
Gonzalez said he thought the ball was going to clear the fence by a little more.
"But Spangenberg did a good job," Gonzalez said. "He was playing deep and he got to the spot quick and he made the catch. When he was coming down, it looks like on the video he dunked the ball, like that was an alley oop or something. I got lucky on that one. It really gave the team momentum but it was a tough loss."
Gray opened impressively, striking out the side in the first, but then quickly got into trouble. He gave up four singles around a double play, including Manuel Margot's RBI hit in the second, and was tagged for five runs in the fourth.
Gray, who allowed seven runs and 10 hits in five innings, said he felt he pitched pretty well overall, though he wished he could have the pitch back that he threw to Richard.
"Just a pitch up. That's all I can say," he said. "If it would've been down, it would've been fine. That's all I had to do was throw a fastball down but didn't get it there. It cost me."
Padres: Placed RHP Kirby Yates on the 10-day disabled list with right ankle tendinitis, retroactive to Sunday. LHP Buddy Baumann was recalled from Triple-A El Paso to shore up the bullpen. "We were looking at three, four, maybe five days before he felt comfortable going out there again, and coming out here to Colorado, we didn't want to run into it with a short bullpen," Green said.
Rockies: CF Charlie Blackmon was back in the starting lineup after missing Sunday's game with a back injury. He was taken out of Saturday night's game in the 10th inning because of back spasms. "I'm glad it cleared up quickly," Blackmon said earlier Monday. "One game (off) here and there is sometimes a necessity." ... RHP Jeff Hoffman, on the DL with right shoulder inflammation, is slated to make his first rehab start Tuesday for Class A Lancaster.
Padres: Rookie LHP Joey Lucchesi (0-0) is slated to make his first career start on the road.
Rockies: LHP Tyler Anderson (0-0) pitched six scoreless innings in his previous outing against the Padres, though he came away with a no-decision.
Facing Joe Mauer with runners at the corners and no outs, Justin Verlander reached back for a fastball that broke in to strike out the lefty-hitting Mauer.
Verlander said he yanked the four-seam fastball and was fortunate Mauer swung over it.
"Sometimes you get lucky," Verlander said.
Verlander didn't need much luck against Mauer and the Minnesota Twins. He struck out nine over seven dominant innings, Carlos Correa had two hits and the Houston Astros won 2-0 on Monday night.
The right-hander followed his strikeout of Mauer in the sixth by striking out Miguel Sano and getting Eddie Rosario to pop out, freezing up Minnesota's rally on a chilly night with a first-pitch temperature of 35 degrees.
Verlander gave up three hits and walked one while helping the reigning World Series champions match their best 11-game start by going 9-2.
The right-hander improved to 11-1 in 14 games, including the playoffs, since being traded to Houston last season. He's 7-0 with a 1.20 ERA in eight regular season starts since the trade.
"He dials it up like the best in the game," Astros manager A.J. Hinch said. "I don't know too many guys that are better in those situations. There's a lot of great pitchers around the league but when he can feel it and he smells that he needs to turn his game up, he really reaches deep and does some incredible things."
Ken Giles earned his first save of the season for Houston by getting Byron Buxton to ground out with a runner on third in the ninth. Buxton hit a long foul ball during the at-bat that just went wide of the left field foul pole.
"Not overly concerned about it, just trying to get these guys to understand - they're probably tired of hearing about it - but we just haven't really settled into consistent at-bats and consistent play and conducive conditions, so you've just got to keep grinding," Twins manager Paul Molitor said. "You've got to hold your own the best you can until you start getting a better feel for playing day in and day out, which we haven't done."
Minnesota reliever Taylor Rogers (1-1) allowed a leadoff double to Correa in the sixth after coming in for starter Lance Lynn. Correa scored from third on rookie J.D. Davis' liner to left field off reliever Trevor Hildenberger.
Davis entered the night 1 for 14 and drove in his first RBI of the season. Marwin Gonzalez added an RBI double in the eighth.
"It's mental," Davis said. "It's going through some growing pains. I'm just glad in a tight situation I came through for the team and got on the board for Justin."
Verlander allowed a one-out double in the first to Mauer and then retired eight in a row before walking Mauer to lead off the fourth. Mauer is hitting .329 in 79 at-bats his career against Verlander, the former Detroit Tigers' ace who is 13-2 in his last 20 starts against the Twins.
Minnesota loaded the bases in the eighth, but Eddie Rosario grounded into an inning-ending double play on the first pitch from reliever Chris Devenski.
LYNN'S NEW HOME
Lynn pitched five scoreless innings in his first start at Target Field but departed early because of a rising pitch count. After walking six batters in his first outing of the year, Lynn walked four on Monday. He struck out nine batters and left after 105 pitches.
"It feels miserable," Lynn said. "I feel like I've gotten off to the worst start I've ever got off to in the big leagues. It needs to change real quick."
Sunday's postponement allowed Minnesota to push back a decision on a fifth starter until Friday. Molitor said a decision on who will fill the spot hasn't been made.
The assumption has been that Phil Hughes would be activated off the disabled list to start, but Molitor said there is also a plan "B and C, at least." Molitor said Hughes will throw another side session on Tuesday and the team is keeping him on track for consideration on Friday.
Astros: OF Josh Reddick was held out with an illness. ... Yuli Gurriel (left hand surgery) was expected to play first and third base in a rehab game at Double-A Corpus Christi on Monday, and he's set to be the designated hitter there Wednesday.
Twins: RHP Ervin Santana (finger surgery) will be back in Minnesota on Tuesday to meet with team doctors. Molitor said he's heard Santana wants to see if he can get approval to do more in his rehab.
Astros: LHP Dallas Keuchel (0-1, 3.27 ERA) will make his third start of the season in Tuesday's evening contest. Keuchel gave up two runs - one earned - in five innings his last start against Baltimore.
Twins: RHP Jake Odorizzi (0-0, 2.51) will make his first start at Target Field as a member of the Twins. Odorizzi, who made three starts at the park with Tampa Bay, gave up three runs in 4 1/3 innings at Pittsburgh last week.
Martin Maldonado wasn't sure whether to slide head-first or feet-first after the throw beat him to home plate.
The Los Angeles Angels catcher got caught in between, and somehow managed to avoid the tag after dropping to both knees.
Albert Pujols hit his 616th career homer, Maldonado had two RBI singles along with his evasive scoring move and the Angels extended their best start in more than three decades with an 8-3 win at Texas on Monday night.
"Yeah, because I got stuck," Maldonado said, trying to explain what happened.
Home plate umpire Angel Hernandez was emphatic with his out call on the play in the sixth inning, but Maldonado immediately pointed to manager Mike Scioscia for a replay challenge.
"I wouldn't have believed it," Scioscia said. "But Martin did everything he could to avoid a tag and he got his hand in there."
Maldonado came home on Chris Young's double that ricocheted awkwardly off the wall down the left-field line and avoided the attempted tag by fellow catcher Robinson Chirinos, putting the Angels up 5-1.
The Angels are 8-3 for the first time since 1987, and fourth time in franchise history. Shohei Ohtani, the rookie two-way standout who was chosen AL Player of the Week, didn't play a day after striking out 12 in seven scoreless innings against Oakland.
Pujols led off the fourth with a line shot just inside the pole in left, his second homer this season and 1,923rd career RBI to break a tie with Jimmie Foxx for sole possession of ninth place on the all-time list. He later added a single for his 2,981st career hit.
"He's getting comfortable in the box," Scioscia said. "It's fun to watch when he's starting swinging like that."
Jose Alvarez (1-0) retired the only two batters he faced after Angels starter Garrett Richards walked the bases loaded with one out in the fifth. Richards struck out six and walked five in his 4 1/3 innings.
Doug Fister (1-2) struck out five with no walks while allowing three runs in his five innings.
"He had a good sinker," manager Jeff Banister said. "Looked like the one pitch to Pujols was left up, but felt like he was making some good pitches."
Angels: RHP JC Ramirez will miss the rest of this season because of a torn ulnar collateral ligament, and Tommy John surgery has been recommended. ... Scioscia said 2B Ian Kinsler "worked out well" before the game and was "very close." He hasn't played since the season opener because of a strained groin.
Rangers: 2B Rougned Odor left the game in the first because of a left hamstring strain sustained when trying to scramble back to first base on a short flyout to right. He tweaked the hamstring stretching for a throw at second base at Oakland on Thursday, but played all three games over the weekend against Toronto.
"At this point, do expect that he's going to miss some time," Banister said.
Rangers 3B Adrian Beltre's single in the fourth was his 3,060th career hit, matching Craig Biggio for 23rd on the all-time list. ... Joey Gallo has 10 RBIs after driving in two runs for Texas. ... Elvis Andrus homered in the ninth for Texas, his second of the season.
CAN BE FIXED
While Richards knows the five walks aren't appealing, he said the problem is mechanical and fixable.
"Obviously my stuff is there. I'm not worried about that," he said. "It's just smoothing out some delivery issues that I have, better direction to the plate, better timing, my arm's dragging a little bit so everything's kind of up in the zone ... It's rhythm, tempo and timing. I'm just a hair off right now."
Ohtani could return to the lineup. He's homered in three straight games as a designated hitter. Both teams start 1-0 left-handers, Tyler Skaggs for the Angels and Martin Perez for the Rangers.
Ned Yost thought Jakob Junis was starting to labor in the fifth inning Monday night, so he turned to bench coach Dale Sveum and promised to pull the young Royals right-hander if it continued.
Laboring? He was throwing a no-hitter.
"Dale thought I was kidding," Yost said, "but I honestly had no idea."
Junis had hit three batters and walked two more, but he did not allow a hit until one out in the seventh inning.
By that point, the Royals were well on their way to a 10-0 rout of the Seattle Mariners to open their three-game series at cold, windy Kauffman Stadium.
"I was paying attention to the score, but I wasn't paying attention to how many hits they had," Yost said. "I looked up and saw he had a no-hitter and I was completely oblivious to it."
So, what would have happened if Yost trotted to the mound to make a change?
"I would have had to tell him to go back," Junis replied.
After Junis (2-0) finally allowed a hit to longtime friend Daniel Vogelbach, he finished up the seventh without any more trouble, running his scoreless streak to 14 innings to start the season.
"He was just kind of in a groove," Vogelbach said. "You've got to give him credit. Sometimes pitchers are on and he pitched well tonight. Tomorrow is a new day."
Junis was given a standing ovation when his night was done by the announced crowd of 12,324, most of whom quickly filed out with temperatures just above freezing.
Everybody in the Royals lineup but Drew Butera scored off Marco Gonzales (1-1) and the Mariners bullpen, and all the catcher had done was drive in a couple of runs. Things got so ugly that Seattle had infielder Tyler Motter pitch the eighth and Mike Moustakas promptly took him deep.
"Solid at-bats all night long in the tough cold," Yost said. "We got on (Gonzales) early, got his pitch count up and it was nice to give Jake a little bit of a cushion."
Gonzalez allowed four runs, eight hits and a walk for the Mariners while retiring seven batters, and reliever Casey Lawrence promptly allowed five more runs while getting five more outs.
Kansas City's offensive outburst on a raw night came out of nowhere. The club had been held to a single run in four of its previous five games, and two runs in the other. The Royals hadn't scored more than three runs in a game since a season-opening 14-7 loss to the White Sox.
They had three runs in the first inning alone Monday night.
They tacked on another in the third before a five-spot in the fifth, a half-inning that lasted so long it was a wonder Junis didn't cool off - or freeze entirely - while sitting in the dugout.
Instead, he trotted back out and worked a four-pitch sixth inning that lasted about 2 minutes in real time. And after he finally yielded a single to Vogelbach in the seventh, Junis struck out Guillermo Heredia and got Ichiro Suzuki to fly out to cap his dominant performance.
Seattle finished with two hits and left five runners on base.
"We didn't do a whole lot offensively. Obviously, we didn't get a hit until later in the game," Mariners manager Scott Servais said. "They just beat us. We had a bad night."
1B Ryon Healy flew back to Seattle on Monday to meet with Dr. Edward Khalfayan and review an MRI of his ankle, which he hurt Saturday during a postgame workout. Healy was put on the DL retroactive to Sunday and RHP Chasen Bradford was recalled from Triple-A Tacoma.
Mariners: DH Nelson Cruz (sprained right ankle) and C Mike Zunino (left oblique strain) resumed baseball activities Monday, and both could be back this weekend. OF Ben Gamel (right oblique strain) is getting at-bats at Tacoma and is also close to returning.
Royals: C Salvador Perez (left knee sprain) hit and ran bases for the first time prior to the game, and reported feeling "pretty good." Yost said his All-Star could be back early in the four-to-six-week timeframe that was given when Perez got hurt just before opening day.
Royals LHP Eric Skoglund makes his season debut against RHP Felix Hernandez as the three-game set continues Tuesday night. Skoglund has not pitched in a game since an exhibition March 17, thanks to rainouts and postponements that have wrecked the Royals' early schedule.
Greg Holland's debut for the St. Louis Cardinals was a dud.
Holland walked four batters in the 10th inning and forced home the go-ahead run Monday night that gave the Milwaukee Brewers a 5-4 win over the Cardinals.
"It's hard to walk four guys and consider it a success," Holland said. "I struggled with my command. I felt good and just put myself in a tough spot.
"There's really no excuse for walking four guys in a row," he said.
The 32-year-old Holland, who tied for the NL lead with 41 saves for Colorado last season, signed as a free agent on opening day. He pitched two innings at Class A before joining the Cardinals earlier in the day.
Holland (0-1) walked two batters to begin the 10th. After a sacrifice bunt by Eric Sogard, an intentional walk loaded the bases.
"You know, they gave me the option there to swing. They really did," said Sogard, who entered the game batting .071 but got three hits. "I see in that situation to even risk not getting the job done was not acceptable.
"I had to get the job done and get the lead runner over to third with less than two outs. I have 100 percent satisfaction getting that bunt down."
Holland then walked Orlando Arcia, and three-time All-Star closer was pulled.
"I hope it's a rarity, but sometimes you just don't have a good feel for the strike zone," Holland said. "Obviously today I struggled with my command kind of from the go."
St. Louis manager Mike Matheny said Holland won't let this debut affect him down the road.
"We threw him right into the fire. It was a tough spot," Matheny said. "To me it's one of those where we let go and we know what we're going to get from him. He's a pro, and he's going to keep working to get sharp and we know what we're going to get."
Matt Albers (2-0) gave up the tying run in the ninth. The Cardinals loaded the bases with no outs, and Dexter Fowler's sacrifice fly tied it at 4.
Albers threw a scoreless 10th.
"You don't often a second chance at it," Albers said. "If you give it, it's good to get to go back out there. I felt pretty good about the outing. It's unfortunate I blew the save.
"We kept at it and scored a run and pulled it off," he said.
Brewers newcomer Lorenzo Cain tripped over the foot of Cardinals first baseman Jose Martinez on a play in the ninth, and both exited. Martinez bruised his right Achilles. Cain has a sore quad.
St. Louis starter Miles Mikolas pitched 6 1-3 innings. He gave up four runs on eight hits. He struck out five and had a balk.
A two-run single by Manny Pina gave the Brewers a 4-3 lead in the fourth.
The Cardinals took a 3-2 in the third with all the runs coming after there were two outs. Fowler hit an RBI single and after Jhoulys Chacin walked the bases loaded, Marcell Ozuna hit a two-run single.
Milwaukee scored twice in the second on a single by Domingo Santana and a two-out double by Arcia.
Milwaukee outfielders cut down two runners attempting to take an extra base. In the first, Fowler tried to stretch a single to right center into a double and was thrown out by center fielder Cain. In the second, Ozuna was thrown out at third after hitting a double down the third-base line by left fielder Ryan Braun.
Brewers: OF Brett Phillips was recalled from Triple-A Colorado Springs on Monday. He replaces OF Christian Yelich (right oblique injury). Phillips, who was 1 for 7 with a triple and seven walks, at Colorado Springs, takes the spot of reliever Adrian Houser, who was optioned Sunday to Double-A Biloxi.
Cardinals: RHP Luke Gregerson (left hamstring strain) was to make his third rehab appearance Monday, general manager Mike Girsch said before the game. "We're getting close. We're probably trying to get him back-to-back and see how that goes, but maybe a week or 10 days, something like that in that range," Girsch said. ... 3B Jedd Gyorko (right hamstring strain) did some work on the field. "He's probably a few days from ramping up his baseball activities," said Girsch, who expects Gyorko to be back in about 10 days. ... RHP Brett Cecil (left shoulder strain) also is dealing with tendinitis in his foot, Girsch said. He is not expected back until close to the end of the month if not later.
Brewers: LHP Brent Suter (1-1, 6.30), who pinch ran for Cain, will be making his third start of the season. Suter is 0-2 with a 4.50 ERA in six career games and two starts against the Cardinals.
Cardinals: RHP Carlos Martinez (1-1, 2.84) has a 1.98 ERA against Milwaukee. That's the second-lowest mark among active pitchers. He pitched 8 1-3 innings on April 4 at Milwaukee in a 6-0 victory.
Noah Syndergaard walked out of the New York Mets postgame clubhouse and into the Miami night wearing a man bun, which shows he can make an adjustment when necessary.
The right-hander's long, wet, unruly mane gave him the most trouble Monday, when he allowed one earned run in six innings to help the Mets win their sixth consecutive game and match the best start in franchise history by beating the Marlins 4-2.
After making his first two starts of the season in chilly weather, Syndergaard took the mound on a humid, 83-degree night and tired in the sixth. He also dealt with blisters on two fingers but said they weren't a hindrance.
"I was actually just more annoyed with my hair flipping in my eyes," he said.
"He was sweating, and his hair was hitting him in the face," manager Mickey Callaway confirmed with a chuckle. "He said that's what he was most frustrated with."
Syndergaard (2-0) had less than his best stuff but stranded four runners in scoring position. That was good enough to help the Mets extend their longest winning streak since September 2016, and they improved to 8-1, matching their start in 1985 and 2006.
"It's a lot of fun watching us play," Syndergaard said. "It's a contagious feeling. Everybody is on the edge of the dugout cheering each other on. It's a lot of fun to be a part of."
Jeurys Familia escaped a jam in the ninth to earn his fifth save, most in the majors. He gave up a single and double before striking out Miguel Rojas and Starlin Castro for the victory.
"We just weren't able to kick anything across," Marlins manager Don Mattingly said.
Familia and three other relievers combined to shut out Miami over the final three innings, lowering the team ERA to 2.25.
The announced crowd of 7,003 - most of them rooting for the visitors- was the Marlins' smallest at home since 2006. This year they began announcing attendance based on only tickets sold, a change from the previous ownership regime.
The Mets arrived in Miami shortly before sunrise after completing their first three-game sweep of Washington since September 2015. But they were unfazed by any lack of sleep, jumping to a 3-0 lead after three innings.
"That's a tough call coming in at 5 or 6 in the morning, getting a few hours' sleep and coming back and trying to win a game," Callaway said. "Great job by the players."
Adrian Gonzalez and Jay Bruce each had an RBI single off Marlins ace Jose Urena (0-2), who allowed three runs in five innings.
Two of the Mets' runs resulted from defensive lapses. In the third inning, Miami catcher Bryan Holaday failed to catch a routine pop foul hit by Bruce, who then delivered a two-out RBI single. A wild throw by first baseman Justin Bour in the seventh led to an unearned run, which came home on Amed Rosario's RBI single.
"Throwing that away, that just can't happen," Bour said.
Miami went 2 for 12 with runners in scoring position, stranded 10, hit into a double play and lost a runner on the bases.
The game was the first this year between the NL East rivals. The Mets went 7-12 against the Marlins last year.
Syndergaard allowed five hits, walked two and struck out five. He improved to 4-0 in six starts against the Marlins with an ERA of 1.62, 47 strikeouts and four walks.
Marlins: C J.T. Realmuto (back) is close to beginning a rehab assignment. ... RHP Dan Straily (forearm) will throw a bullpen session Tuesday and is expected to begin a rehab assignment soon. ... LHP Wei-Yin Chen (left elbow) is scheduled to throw a bullpen session Tuesday in Jupiter and is then expected to advance to extended spring training. ... 3B Martin Prado (hamstring) played three innings in extended spring training. ... 1B-OF Garrett Cooper (wrist) will wear a cast for at least a week. ... RHP Elieser Hernandez (tooth infection) has been temporarily sidelined from a rehab assignment because of a broken finger nail.
Marlins: RHP Dustin McGowan signed a minor league deal and will be assigned to Triple-A New Orleans. RHP Brian Ellington cleared waivers and was released.
Mets RHP Jacob deGrom (2-0, 1.54) is scheduled to start Tuesday against LHP Caleb Smith (0-1, 4.32).
Nick Williams' patience paid off.
Williams hit a tiebreaking solo homer as a pinch-hitter in the bottom of the eighth inning to lift the Philadelphia Phillies to a 6-5 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Monday night.
Scott Kingery homered for the first time in his career and Rhys Hoskins also went deep for the Phillies.
Tucker Barnhart hit a two-run homer for the Reds.
Williams drove a 3-1 pitch deep into the right-center field seats off Kevin Quackenbush (0-1) for his first career pinch-hit homer. A notorious first-pitch swinger, Williams took a breaking ball out of the strike zone and let a fastball go with the green light on a 3-0 count.
"I had a plan and I told myself I'd stick with it," Williams said. "I took one and when he threw it again, I did some damage."
Manager Gabe Kapler was impressed with Williams in batting practice.
"When he took 3-0, you knew he felt really comfortable," Kapler said. "He picked a pitch to drive and did a great job."
Luis Garcia (1-1) tossed a scoreless inning in relief for the win and Hector Neris finished for his first save.
The Phillies have won three of four while the Reds have dropped four of five.
Hoskins gave Philadelphia a 2-1 lead in the first when he ripped a line drive into the left-center field seats. Kingery connected in the second to make it 3-1, sending a liner into the flower bed above the left-field wall.
"The win makes it that much better," Kingery said.
After Barnhart's homer tied it at 3-3 in the third, Carlos Santana's RBI double and Maikel Franco's sacrifice fly in the bottom half put the Phillies ahead 5-3.
Scooter Gennett lined an RBI double in the fourth and Billy Hamilton drove in the tying run with an infield single in the sixth. Hamilton tried to score from second base on reliever Adam Morgan's wild pitch, but catcher Jorge Alfaro threw to the pitcher covering the plate in time for the out.
"What an athletic play," Kapler said.
The Reds opened the scoring in the first when Adam Duvall walked with the bases loaded, but Ben Lively pitched out of the jam. Barnhart lined out to shortstop and Phillip Ervin and Cliff Pennington struck out.
"It was a big opportunity and we weren't able to tack on," Reds manager Bryan Price said. "It was a chance to put up a big number and nothing really went our way after that."
ON THE FARM
Reds righty Hunter Greene, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2017 amateur draft, had eight strikeouts in three innings in his first start with Class A Dayton. He allowed two runs and five hits.
Reds: Cody Reed gave up five runs - three earned - and four hits in three innings.
Phillies: Lively allowed five runs and nine hits, striking out seven in 5 2/3 innings.
NO YOU DON'T
Reds first baseman Joey Votto hustled after a foul ball to prevent it from rolling to a fan. He was booed all night.
The Reds called up infielder Alex Blandino and right-hander Zack Weiss from Triple-A Louisville.
Reds: 3B Eugenio Suarez (fractured right thumb) and OF Scott Schebler (right ulnar nerve contusion) were placed on the 10-day disabled list. Both were injured when they were hit by pitches. Schebler's stint is retroactive to April 6.
RHP Homer Bailey (0-2, 4.22 ERA) starts for the Reds while RHP Aaron Nola (0-0, 2.61 ERA) goes for the Phillies on Tuesday night. Bailey is 1-4 with a 3.97 ERA in 10 starts vs. Philadelphia. Nola is 1-1 with a 3.15 ERA in three starts vs. Cincinnati.
With one swing of the bat, Josh Donaldson turned a tight duel into a blowout and sent the historically meager crowd at Camden Yards scurrying toward the exits.
Donaldson hit his fourth career grand slam, Steve Pearce homered in a third successive game and the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Baltimore Orioles 7-1 Monday night before 7,915 chilly fans.
Gametime temperature was 44 degrees, and a slight mist made the conditions even more miserable. That contributed to the lowest paid attendance in the ballpark's 27-year existence, breaking the previous record of 9.129 for Baltimore versus Tampa Bay on April 12, 2010.
There were no fans at a game on April 29, 2015, when the Orioles hosted the Chicago White Sox in a closed stadium due to security concerns amid civil unrest in Baltimore.
In this one, the Blue Jays were clinging to a 2-1 lead in the ninth before Curtis Granderson drew a bases-loaded walk and Donaldson followed with a shot to center off rookie Nestor Cortes Jr.
"He's done that many times since he's been here. Two-run ballgame, that makes a huge difference," manager John Gibbons said. "That gives the team a huge, huge lift."
On a raw night far better suited for football, Donaldson - a three-time All-Star - displayed mid-summer form.
"It's tough to hit anyhow, in general. The conditions definitely make it more difficult," Donaldson said. "But we have to be professional about it and go out there and do our job."
That's certainly how the 34-year-old Pearce operates.
After getting his 500th career hit in the second inning, Pearce put Toronto up 2-0 in the third with a two-run shot off Dylan Bundy (0-1) on a 3-0 pitch. It marked the first time in his career that Pearce, who's had three separate stints with the Orioles, homered in three consecutive games.
"He's on a nice little roll," Gibbons said.
J.A. Happ (2-1) struck out nine in six innings, allowing one run and five hits. He was 0-3 against the Orioles last season.
Bundy gave up two runs and four hits with 10 strikeouts in seven innings. The right-hander has a 1.35 ERA in three starts, yet remains winless.
"It was one mistake there," Bundy said of this outing, "but I gave up more runs than we had, so that's baseball, I guess."
Manny Machado hit a third-inning homer for the Orioles, who went 0 for 12 with runners in scoring position and stranded 12.
"We just couldn't get that big knock," manager Buck Showalter lamented.
Slugger Chris Davis, who's off to a miserable start, cracked the bat over his knee after striking out in the sixth. He later was thrown out trying to bunt against the shift during an 0-for-4 performance that lowered his batting average to .088.
Blue Jays: 1B Kendrys Morales strained his right hamstring running out a single and was removed for a pinch runner in the second inning. Gibbons did not expect Morales to land on the disabled list. ... OF Anthony Alford (hamstring) has started his rehab in Florida, where he is expected to remain for a few days before likely heading to Triple-A Buffalo, Gibbons said.
Orioles: DH Mark Trumbo (quad strain) is expected to start for Double-A Bowie on Tuesday and Wednesday. ... RHP Alex Cobb could make his season debut Saturday in Boston, Showalter said. Cobb missed most of spring training before signing as a free agent in late March.
Toronto OF Randal Grichuk doubled in the ninth inning, ending a career-long 0-for-26 drought. He's 3 for 35 (.086) this season.
The Orioles recalled their top pitching prospect, Hunter Harvey, to fortify a weary bullpen. Harvey, the 22nd overall pick in the 2013 draft, has not yet pitched in the majors.
Blue Jays: RHP Aaron Sanchez (0-1, 5.40 ERA) seeks his first win since July 14 in the second game of the series Tuesday night.
Orioles: RHP Andrew Cashner (1-1, 4.09) makes his second home start with Baltimore. In his Orioles debut, he yielded three HRs in a loss to the Twins on March 31.