The Phillies raced out to a 4-0 lead in the 2nd inning and never looked back. They scored one more in the fourth inning in route to a 5-0 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates. Phillies starting pitcher John Lannan and the other four relievers combined for a one-hitter on the afternoon. Reliever Mike Adams followed Lannan and pitched one perfect inning with one strikeout. Charlie Manuel said he was pleased with the Phillies bullpen as of late, and it seems like everyone is getting their rhythm together in time for opening day.
Michael Young continued his consistent hitting streak through the spring, with two hits and two RBIs. Ben Revere and Yuniesky Betancourt chipped in as well, each with two hits. The Phillies frustrated Pirates opening day starter A.J. Burnett, who lasted just 1 1/3 innings before being pulled. The Phillies are now 5-5 through their spring exhibition schedule while the Pirates have lost seven of eight and are now 3- 7.
Say this for Zach Greinke: he is not afraid to let people know about his motivations.
Greinke, a starting pitcher who split last season between the Milwaukee Brewers and Los Angeles Angels, signed a 6-year, $147 million deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers back in December. At the time of the signing, this deal was the second-largest in MLB history among contracts given to pitchers.
And in a rare bit of candid honestly, Greinke left no doubt that money is the biggest reason he will wear Dodger Blue this season.
"I could play for the worst team if they paid the most," Greinke said in an interview with CBSSports.com. "If the last-place team offers $200 million and the first-place team offers $10, I'm going to go for the $200 million no matter what team it was."
Coming off a 101-loss season, the Chicago Cubs could use any ray of hope available for 2013. One of the most obvious prospects is the arrival in the farm system of Cuban signee Jorge Soler, but fans shouldn’t necessarily expect to see him at the major league level this year.
As reported by the Chicago Tribune, manager Dale Sveum suggested that the franchise is in no hurry to promote Soler. “Fast track? There’s no reason to do that,” Sveum commented, citing the almost-21-year-old’s lack of experience with top-level pitching.
Fans, like Sveum, are well aware of how badly the Cub lineup needs the kind of power threat that Soler has obvious potential to provide. Painful though it will be, though, both fans and team will be better served by waiting for the youngster to develop at his own pace.
It's entirely probable that Double-A is the highest Soler will rise this season, and that's just the way it should be.
Despite growing up in a baseball-centric household, B.J. and Justin Upton had never been teammates for any significant amount of time.
Thanks to the Atlanta Braves, all of that is about to change.
The Braves, who signed B.J. Upton as a free agent earlier this offseason, scored a major coup last night when they added younger brother Justin in a seven-player trade with the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Uptons are the latest in a long line of brother tandems to team up in the Majors and are the first since Scott and Jerry Hariston back in 2010.
The Chicago Cubs have made no secret of their interest in trading aging left fielder Alfonso Soriano as they reshape the roster for the future. Although the veteran slugger seems an ideal fit for a designated hitter role, at least one proposed trade would keep him in the National League.
According to CBS Sports, the Cubs have discussed sending Soriano to the Phillies in exchange for perennial outfield prospect Domonic Brown. In that scenario—which appears unlikely to go through—Chicago would foot the bill for $26 million of the $36 million still owed to Soriano.
For all that both teams have a stake in getting a deal done here—Chicago in unloading Soriano, Philly in getting a productive bat to protect Ryan Howard—this proposal is not the move that either team needs. The trade would likely do more harm than good for both teams if it turned into reality.