Two of baseball’s top prospects are at the top of the news today – which makes it fun for the baseball junkies like me.
Mike Trout is back. The Angels released the struggling (and, sadly, aging) Bobby Abreu and brought back talented outfielder Mike Trout. Trout will be batting lead-off tonight.
A full and decent season would have put Abreu in the neighborhood of 2500 hits and possibly 300 homers and 400 stolen bases. He’s been a great player for a lot of seasons – but I wonder if he’ll get consideration for the hall of fame. Something to write about tomorrow, maybe.
Trout wasn’t horrible in 40 games last season, but he’s been amazing in the minors, including a .403 clip at Salt Lake City this April. He’s developed patience at the plate, has well above average speed and range, and a bit of power. He could the next Bobby Abreu with better defensive skills.
And, Bryce Harper will make his debut for the Washington Nationals tonight. Harper was called up because third baseman Ryan Zimmerman was placed on the DL with a right shoulder injury (inflammation). Harper was hitting .250 with AAA Syracuse and is, depending on the source, the top prospect in all of baseball. He’ll start in left field for the Nationals.
The Nationals also got a scare last night when Chad Tracy took a Kenley Jansen pitch on his right wrist – but fortunately has just a bone bruise.
The Crime Blotter…
The Detroit Tigers placed outfielder Delmon Young on the restricted list after Young was arraigned on hate crime charges following a fight outside his hotel during which police reported that he yelled anti-Semitic epithets at the people he was fighting. Young was also inebriated at the time.
Young has offered an apology to the team and fans, but said nothing regarding his plight specifically.
Danny Worth returns from AAA Toledo to take Young’s roster spot.
Beware the Streaking Panda!
Pablo Sandoval continues his consecutive game hitting streak, now twenty games, to the start the season. It’s the longest such streak since Steve Garvey opened 1978 with hits in 21 straight games. The MLB site lists George Sisler as having the longest such streak at 34 games, but apparently that list starts with 1901… Willie Keeler opened the 1897 season with a streak that went 44 games.
Speaking of Streaking – Beware the Umpire…
Jeff Kellogg didn’t realize that the job description for being a home plate umpire included capturing streakers, but in Baltimore his blind-side shot helped bring a man to justice. Suffice it to say, the streaker was out at home.
Jeremy Guthrie heads to the 15-Day DL with a minor shoulder injury suffered when he got in an accident riding his bike to Coors Field on Friday. Guillermo Moscoso will take Guthrie’s spot in the Colorado Rockies rotation. An MRI suggests no structural damage, so he just needs time to heal from the bumps and bruises.
Brad Lidge went on the 15-Day DL with a strained abdominal wall, which means Ryan Perry becomes a member of the Washington Nationals bullpen. Lidge said he’s had the pain a couple of days but reared its ugly head (belly?) during a bullpen session.
Dodgers reliever Javy Guerra has checked out and may be allowed to pitch this weekend – which is remarkable considering he took a line drive off his jaw on Wednesday night. Brian McCann returned a pitch that caromed off the right side of Guerra’s jaw – and never knocked the kid down. That’s a tough kid!
Manager Don Mattingly said that Guerra’s jaw held up, but Guerra’s knee and foot are sore from twisting to get out of the way and absorbing the shot. If you missed it, check out the related video on the link…
Those celebrating with cards, cake, and remembrances include:
(1902) Charles “Red” Lucas
(1919) Charlie Metro
(1925) Clarence “Cuddles” Marshall
(1934) Jackie Brandt
(1935) Pedro Ramos
(1960) John Cerutti
(1960) Tom Browning
(1964) Barry Larkin
(1986) Dillon Gee