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Player News
Padres' Black on Gyorko: 'He's a very confident hitter'
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(5:10 pm ET) Padres manager Bud Black called second baseman Jedd Gyorko a "very confident hitter" Tuesday, U-T San Diego reports.

"His intent is to hit," Black said. "He’s a very confident hitter, and when you think you can hit, you swing."

Pitchers exploited Gyorko's aggressiveness last season, and he struck out 100 times in 400 at-bats while hitting .210/.280/.333 with 10 home runs and 51 RBI. He hit better after spending nearly two months on the disabled list due to a plantar fasciitis. He focused on adding muscle this offseason.

"I went a little lighter last year in an attempt to get a little more flexibility," he said. "Obviously, it didn’t work, so I tried to beef back up. I tried to get as strong as I could coming into camp."

The team added plenty of offensive talent this offseason, and the team won't be forced to rely upon Gyorko to be a rock in the heart of the lineup this season.

"Unfairly, we probably put a lot of pressure on Jedd to be a guy in the middle of the order," Black said. “And I think he’ll eventually be a solid run producer there … I think another year of experience, being in amongst a group of (Justin) Upton and (Matt) Kemp, (Carlos) Quentin, whoever might be in the lineup, there will be a little bit of pressure off him to be the guy. I think guys like pressure. Guys want expectations. That’s what makes guys tick … Jedd has that. But when you have good players around you, it does put your mind at ease."


White Sox 1B Adam LaRoche not panicking over spring numbers
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(5:05 pm ET) White Sox first baseman Adam LaRoche hasn't had a very good showing at the plate this spring, batting .186 with 14 strikeouts in 15 games. However, LaRoche said there is no cause for concern since his spring numbers never look pretty.

“My swing is one where it seems to take me the full spring training and some years past that to get it dialed in,’’ LaRoche said, per the Chicago Sun-Times. “I can remember only two or three springs where with a week left I felt really good.

“The good news is I’ve been there a lot, so there is no need to panic. It comes and goes here for a while. But I’ll be good.’’


Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright named Opening Day starter
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(5:03 pm ET) Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright has been named the Opening Day starter for Sunday's game against the Cubs, reports MLB.com.

Wainwright, who finished his final spring training start Tuesday, posted a 20-9 record in 2014 with a 2.38 ERA and 179 strikeouts in 227 innings. Wainwright dealt with a slight abdominal strain early in camp, capping him at just three starts in spring training.


Braves' Melvin Upton expecting to shed protective boot on Friday
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(5:01 pm ET) Braves outfielder Melvin Upton Jr. is expecting to receive medical clearance on Friday to shed the protective boot on his injured left foot, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Upton has been sidelined all spring with the injury. He had the hard cast removed from his injured left foot last week, and is expected to start the season on the 15-day disabled list.

"I've thrown a couple of times, lifting weights. Just waiting to get it off," he said. "It'll probably take a week to actually start really working on it again -- get in the shoe, start walking on it again. There's no timetable, but it'll probably be (when he's ready)."


Report: Blue Jays pay Johan Santana $100,000 retention bonus
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(5:00 pm ET) The Blue Jays have decided to pay a $100,000 retention bonus to pitcher Johan Santana to keep him in the organization, Yahoo! Sports reports.

Manager John Gibbons said recently that Santana could be ready to return to the mound in mid-April. He's working his way back from shoulder and Achilles issues.


Wade Miley confirms he'll start for Red Sox against Yankees
by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(4:59 pm ET) Red Sox pitcher Wade Miley confirmed that he would be the fourth or fifth starter for the Red Sox to start the season. 

Miley told the media he would make his first start of the regular season against the Yankees, although he didn't specify which game he would start. That series starts after three games against the Phillies. 

That would indicate that Justin Masterson is the Red Sox's third starter, although manager John Farrell hasn't confirmed it. 


Corey Dickerson scratched from Rockies lineup on Tuesday
by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(4:55 pm ET) Rockies outfielder Corey Dickerson was scratched from the lineup on Tuesday, per MLB.com.

Dickerson was benched as a precautionary measure, due to back tightness. Dickerson is hitting .289 this spring. 


Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright allows two hits in final spring outing
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(4:53 pm ET) Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright gave up two runs (one earned) on eight hits in 6 2/3 innings pitched Tuesday in his final spring training start. Wainwright also added one walk and two strikeouts to his totals.

Wainwright finished spring training with a 3.14 ERA with seven strikeouts and three walks in three starts.


Dodgers' Andre Ethier exits after HBP on right elbow
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(4:53 pm ET) Dodgers outfielder Andre Ethier was forced out of Tuesday's Cactus League game against the White Sox after he took a Carlos Rodon pitch to his right elbow, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Chris Heisey took over for Ethier in the bottom of the second inning. Ethier is hitting .313 this spring. He was sent for X-rays after leaving the game. The team will likely provide an update on the extent of his injury after the game.


Rockies' John Axford out since Wednesday after son injured
by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(4:51 pm ET) Rockies pitcher John Axford left camp last Wednesday, after his son was bitten by a rattlesnake, per MLB.com.

The two and a half year old was in danger of losing his foot, but his condition has improved and doctors believe the foot will be saved.

Axford has played catch and threw a bullpen session on Tuesday, but it's not sure when he'll return to game action.


 
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