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Rangers' Gallo, Alfaro, Manzara to start season in Double-A


by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(3/31/2015) Rangers prospects Joey Gallo, Jorge Alfaro and Nomar Mazara will open the season with Double-A Frisco, reports MLB.com. 

Gallo, who was the team's first-round draft pick in 2012, hit .250 in 15 games this spring with two home runs and six RBI. Alfaro hit .313 with four RBI in 16 plate appearances while Mazara hit .286 in seven at-bats.


Yankees catcher Austin Romine still unsure of role


by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(3/31/2015) Yankees backup catcher Austin Romine still doesn't know where he will be when the season begins, reports NJ.com.

Romine, who is battling with John Ryan Murphy for the backup role at catcher, is hitting a low .143 in 28 plate appearances this spring.

It's hard for Romine to not think about what will happen.

"Being a human, you're going to think about it," he continued. "It is your career, it's your future, stuff like that. So best I can do is go out there and show them I can catch."

With four games left, Romine will continue to try to perform at the highest level.

"I'm just playing. I'm playing to make this team, but I'm also playing for the teams out there," Romine said. "But I want nothing more than to make it on this team. That's my goal."


Geovany Soto, Matt Albers win spots on White Sox


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(3/31/2015) Catcher Geovany Soto and pitcher Matt Albers have won spots on the White Sox and are expected to be placed on the active roster, Yahoo! Sports reports.

Soto hit .286/.444/.500 with one home run in 28 spring at-bats. Albers posted a 5.14 ERA and 9:3 K:BB ratio in seven innings.


Twins C Josmil Pinto catches five innings Tuesday


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(3/31/2015) Twins catcher Josmil Pinto went 1 for 3 with a home run and caught five innings in a minor-league game Tuesday, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports. Pinto passed his concussion tests Monday and returned to catch three innings before ramping up his playing time Tuesday.

Mariners' McClendon very pleased with progress of Mike Zunino


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/31/2015) Mariners catcher Mike Zunino has caught more games and innings than any other catcher in the Cactus League through Monday, according to MLB.com. Manager Lloyd McClendon said that is a testament to the progress Zunino is making after an up-and-down year in 2014.

“He came in in great shape and there’s some things we wanted to see him do this spring and he’s starting to do them,” McClendon said Tuesday. “Taking charge of the staff, running that staff, getting them to do the things he needs them to do to be successful during the course of a game. Sometimes you have to pull the whip out. He’s done all those things. I think it’s taken him the whole six weeks to get all of that out of the staff. That’s why he’s played as much as he’s played.”

Zunino, who hit .199 with 22 home runs last season, is batting .354 (17 for 48) with five doubles, seven home runs, 10 runs and 13 RBI in 18 spring games.

“I don’t think he was ready to do it last year. He was trying to get his feet wet his first full year in the big leagues as well,” McClendon said. “I think he’s learned this staff. He knows he can be successful in this league and the maturation process has brought him to this point in his career.

“He’s been on the fast track from the start and he hasn’t disappointed. It’s mind blowing, if you really think about it, to think how far he’s come so fast.”


Rockies traded catcher Audry Perez to Orioles


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(3/31/2015) The Rockies traded catcher Audry Perez to the Orioles in exchange for cash considerations, according to MASN Sports. Perez, who is projected to start the season at Triple-A, went 1 for 11 this spring. 

Red Sox's Quintero holds off in exercising opt-out clause


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/31/2015) Red Sox catcher Humberto Quintero will wait a few more days before deciding if he will exercise the opt-out clause in his minor-league contract.

Quintero was in good shape to make the Opening Day roster following the news of Christian Vazquez's elbow injury, but the acquistion Monday of catcher Sandy Leon means Quintero is still vying for a spot on the roster.

“I’ve been playing in the big leagues for a few years so I know, it’s baseball,” the 35-year-old Quintero said, per WEEI.com. “I’ll just try and do my best every time they put me in the lineup. I’ve hit the ball well, blocked the ball, and I feel great.”


Josh Thole's demotion impacts Blue Jays roster, catcher rotation


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/31/2015) The Blue Jays announced Tuesday catcher Josh Thole was optioned to Triple-A Buffalo. Thole's demotion means Russell Martin will be knuckleballer R.A. Dickey's personal catcher, per MLB.com.

Thole's demotion also means Dioner Navarro, who has asked for a trade, will be the backup catcher and get some at-bats at DH.


Mariners C Mike Zunino improving on hitting with two strikes


by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(3/30/2015) A year ago, Mariners catcher Mike Zunino showcased the power he can bring at the plate with 22 home runs. However, his .199 batting average did not do him much good otherwise. 

Part of the problem was Zunino's inability to put the ball in play with two strikes. This spring, Zunino has done a better job of being patient with two strikes against him. On Monday, Zunino hit a home run and a two-run double in Seattle's 5-3 win over the Angles. 

The double came with Zunino down 1-2 in the count, before working it up to 3-2. 

"That's what he's been working on all spring, the ability to put the ball in play with two strikes," Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon said, via MLB.com. "The knowledge and understanding to know what they're trying to do to you in those situations. He's continues to grow in that. He's gotten better this spring with it."


Rays reassign Everett Teaford, Brandon Gomes, six others


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(3/30/2015) The Rays reassigned pitchers Everett Teaford and Brandon Gomes to minor-league camp along with six other players, the Tampa Bay Times reports.

Teaford and Gomes were in the mix for spots on the 25-man roster before being reassigned. The team also cut catcher Mayo Acosta, outfielders Corey Brown and Joey Butler and pitchers Jhan Marinez, Jim Miller and Jordan Norberto.


Farrell: Leon acquisition likely pushes Swihart to Triple-A roster


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/30/2015) Red Sox manager John Farrell indicated Monday with the acquisition of Sandy Leon from the Nationals, prospect Blake Swihart will start the season in Triple-A, per ESPN. Leon has the inside track for the backup catcher job behind Ryan Hanigan.

Twins catcher Josmil Pinto catches in minor-league game Monday


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/30/2015) Twins catcher Josmil Pinto (concussion) caught three innings in a minor-league game Monday. He went 0 for 1 with two walks. He plans to catch in another minor-league game Tuesday, per the Pioneer Press.

Astros' Hinch: Jason Casto 'a well-rounded player'


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(3/30/2015) Catcher Jason Castro is the longest-tenured member of the Astros and optimistic about the direction of the team, MLB.com reports.

"It's a great time for this organization," Castro said. "It's exciting to have been here and weathered the storm a little bit through the middle of that and see it through to the other side. It's exciting and hopefully we can play up to the type of baseball we're capable of playing. We have some guys in here who can do some pretty special things on the baseball field."

Manager A.J. Hinch is a fan of the different things Castro brings to the lineup and behind the plate.

"Jason's a well-rounded player," Hinch said. "There's a reason he's an All-Star, there's a reason he can contribute in every facet of the game. For us, being a left-handed bat, we have some right-handed bats that we're going to rely upon… and he'll offer us something different than those that hit in front of him. I like his balance, his composure, his steadiness of how he approaches the game. I look forward to his leadership. As he's entering these years of his career, he's got a track record under his belt to provide some steady leadership and have a good year for us."

Castro is 9 for 34 with two home runs this spring.


Orioles reassign C J.P. Arencibia to minor-league camp


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(3/30/2015) The Orioles have reassigned catcher J.P. Arencibia to minor-league camp, the team announced Monday.

Arencibia received a cortisone shot in his right forearm and is expected to be re-evaluated Wednesday. He's played just once since March 17 and was 2 for 17 this spring before being reassigned.


Twins C Josmil Pinto (concussion) passes tests, cleared to return


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(3/30/2015) Twins catcher Josmil Pinto has passed his concussion tests and has been cleared to return to game action, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports.

Pinto will likely play in a minor-league game Monday as he works his way back into action. Pinto hasn't played since March 21 and is 7 for 17 this spring.


Red Sox acquire Leon from Nationals, place Vazquez on 60-day DL


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/30/2015) The Red Sox traded for Nationals catcher Sandy Leon on Monday. The Nationals received cash considerations in exchange for Leon.

To clear a spot on the 40-man roster, the Red Sox placed catcher Christian Vazquez (elbow) on the 60-day disabled list.

The 26-year-old Leon has appeared in just 34 games at the major-league level. He has a .236/.324/.329/.653 slash line over eight seasons in the minors.


Tigers reassign six players to minor-league camp


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/30/2015) The Tigers announced Monday they reassigned Jordan Lennerton, Xavier Avery, Manny Pina, Jefry Marte, Aaron Westlake and Jason Krizan to minor-league camp, per MLB.com.

Tigers option Holaday to Triple-A, McCann wins backup catcher job


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/30/2015) The Tigers announced Monday catcher Bryan Holaday was optioned to Triple-A Toledo. His demotion means James McCann will start the season as the primary backup to starting catcher Alex Avila, per MLB.com.

Orioles' Arencibia receives injection, to be re-evaluated Wednesday


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/30/2015) Orioles catcher J.P. Arencibia received a cortisone injection in his right forearm, as he continues to be sidelined due to a flexor mass strain, per MLB.com. He is slated to be re-evaluated Wednesday.

While Arencibia took batting practice Sunday, he said he still didn't feel right while throwing, which is why he received the cortisone injection.


Athletics reassign three players to minors Sunday


by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(3/29/2015) The Athletics decided to reassign three players Sunday including: shortstop Andy Parrino, catcher Luke Carlin and first baseman Max Muncy, reports the San Francisco Chronicle.

Carlin git .273 with six RBI in 22 plate appearances this spring while Muncy hit .375 in 32 at-bats with two home runs and 10 RBI. Parrino hit just .196 with four doubles and 11 strikeouts in 46 at-bats.

Carlin is likely to be back with the team Tuesday to catch for Barry Zito, according to the report.


Yankees option Bryan Mitchell, Ramon Flores


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(3/29/2015) The Yankees optioned pitcher Bryan Mitchell and outfielder Ramon Flores to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Sunday while reassigning eight players to minor-league camp.

Mitchell allowed six earned runs in 7 1/3 innings this spring. Flores hit .206/.270/.412 with two home runs in 34 spring at-bats.

In addition to the options, the Yankees reassigned catchers Francisco Arcia and Kyle Higashioka, infielders Cole Figueroa and Jonathan Galvez, outfielder Slade Heathcott and pitchers Kyle Davies, Jacob Lindgren and Nick Rumbelow to minor-league camp.


Curt Casali, Bobby Wilson still battling for Rays' backup catcher job


by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(3/29/2015) In the final week of spring training, Rays manager Kevin Cash still isn't sure who his backup catcher will be. 

Curt Casali and Bobby Wilson are the two candidates for the job. 

"I think both guys have had good camps," Cash said, per MLB.com. "They've shown what they need to show. And we've kind of anticipated that that would happen. So there are going to be some discussions and decisions that have to be made.

Casali is hitting .208 this spring. 

"I know he's been continuing to work," Cash said, although he'd like to see him "drive the ball a little more." 

Wilson is hitting .143. 

"We knew Bobby," Cash said. "A little more of a track record, history at the Major League level. I think that helps."


J.P. Arencibia misses Sunday's game for Orioles


by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(3/29/2015) Orioles catcher J.P. Arencibia missed Sunday's game, because he's still bothered by the strained right flexor mass, per MASN Sports.

Arencibia has been sidelined since Thursday with the injury. He was on the team's travel list for Sunday's road game and was thought to have a chance to return.  


Red Sox considering Swihart, haven't asked Jays about Navarro


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(3/29/2015) The Red Sox will give catching prospect Blake Swihart an extended look over the final week of spring training to determine whether to give him a spot on the Opening Day roster, CBSSports.com Baseball Insider Jon Heyman reports.

Christian Vazquez was projected to be the team's starting catcher coming into spring training but is dealing with an elbow injury that may require Tommy John surgery. Despite the need at the catcher position, the Red Sox have not yet called the Blue Jays to inquire about No. 2 catcher Dioner Navarro, who has asked to be traded and is carrying a $5-million salary for 2015.


Mariners option Roenis Elias, reassign eight to minor-league camp


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(3/29/2015) The Mariners have optioned pitcher Roenis Elias to Triple-A Tacoma, the team announced Sunday.

An earlier report Sunday said that the team was considering going with a six-man rotation, and it's possible that could still come to pass, with Elias making frequent trips to and from the active roster. For now, it appears Taijuan Walker will serve as the team's fifth starter.

The Mariners also reassigned the following eight players to minor-league camp Sunday: catcher John Baker, outfielder Endy Chavez, infielders Shawn O'Malley and Carlos Rivero and pitchers Mark Lowe, Jordan Pries, Kevin Correia and Joe Saunders .


 
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