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Hit Parade for Week 4

Senior Fantasy Writer
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After three weeks of trying something new, I've decided to ammend this year's Hit Parade so that it more closely resembles last year's.

Though time constraints factor in to what I can and can't do, my first priority is to write something people will benefit from reading. Some of the feedback we've received over the last three weeks suggests the new approach was a step in the wrong direction.

If you'd like to weigh in on the matter, drop me a line on Twitter (@CBSScottWhite). Compare this week's Hit Parade to last week's and tell me which you like better. I have a feeling I know what the answer will be.

In this version, I've assessed Fantasy-relevant hitters based on streaks, matchups, injuries and lineup changes and divided them into five categories: "no-brainers," "advisable starts," "shaky starts," "strictly AL/NL-only" and "don't bother."

These designations rate each player's Fantasy value for the current week only and have no bearing on his value for the season as a whole.

Any players not appearing on these lists are presumed to be below "don't bother" status and are obvious sits in Fantasy.

All stats are updated through Wednesday, April 17. Injuries are shown in parentheses.

Most Added Hitters (as of 4/19)
Player Name % change
1. Brandon Crawford, SS, Giants 45
2. Evan Gattis, C, Braves 41
3. Chris Carter, OF, Astros 25
4. Chris Johnson, 3B, Braves 25
5. Josh Donaldson, 3B, Athletics 24
6. John Buck, C, Mets 21
7. Nate Schierholtz, OF, Cubs 20
8. Everth Cabrera, SS, Padres 18
9. Daniel Nava, OF, Red Sox 17
10. Daniel Murphy, 2B, Mets 16

Catcher

This offseason, the Mariners decided they could live with Jesus Montero's shortcomings behind the plate as long as he lived up to his potential at the plate. So far, he has not, and so Kelly Shoppach has gotten the nod over him in three of the team's last five games. Montero has favorable matchups against the Astros and Angels this week, so if they don't get him going, he might have a hard time reclaiming regular at-bats apart from a lineup shuffle that frees up the DH spot. Avoid him for now.

Worth a second look: Evan Gattis, Braves
Gattis has cooled off over his last five games, going 2 for 19, but he has become such a critical part of the Braves lineup that you can count on him remaining a part of it at least until Brian McCann comes back. He has three games at Coors Field this week and also gets to beat up on Rick Porcello when the Braves travel to Detroit (DH, anyone?), so I expect him to come roaring back.
Approach with caution: Salvador Perez, Royals
Not only is Perez off to a slow start this season with a sub-.600 OPS, but he has to face Max Scherzer, Justin Verlander and Anibal Sanchez to start out the week, followed by three more righties in the Indians series. He hit .279 with a .711 OPS against righties last year compared to .358 and 1.021 OPS against lefties, so now isn't the time for a rebound.

No-brainers: Buster Posey, Joe Mauer, Carlos Santana, Yadier Molina, Matt Wieters, Wilin Rosario, Mike Napoli
Advisable starts: Miguel Montero, Jonathan Lucroy, Evan Gattis, A.J. Pierzynski
Shaky starts: Salvador Perez, Jesus Montero, John Buck, J.P. Arencibia, Ryan Doumit, Tyler Flowers, Alex Avila, Russell Martin, John Jaso, Jarrod Saltalamacchia, A.J. Ellis
Strictly AL/NL-only: Chris Iannetta, Welington Castillo, Kurt Suzuki, Derek Norris, Jason Castro, Francisco Cervelli, Rob Brantly, Nick Hundley, Devin Mesoraco, Erik Kratz
Don't bother: Kelly Shoppach, Martin Maldonado, Michael McKenry, David Ross, Carlos Ruiz (suspension), Yasmani Grandal (suspension), Brian McCann (wrist), Wilson Ramos (hamstring), Mike Zunino, Travis d'Arnaud

Best Five Hitting Schedules
Team Schedule
1. Rangers @LAA3, @MIN4
2. Mariners @HOU3, LAA4
3. Phillies PIT4, @NYM3
4. Cubs @CIN3, @MIA4
5. Red Sox OAK3, HOU4

First base

Looks like Freddie Freeman's stay on the DL will be a minimal one. Sidelined since the team's fifth game with a strained oblique, he's been taking swings in the cage and seems to be on track to return Monday at Colorado. Three games at Coors Field should help him shake off the rust pretty quickly, so unless you're just loaded at first base, you'll want Freeman in your lineup this week.

Worth a second look: Lance Berkman, Rangers
Berkman has had to sit out four of the team's last seven games, partially because the Rangers seem reluctant to use him against left-handed pitchers and partially because they've been without the DH during their current series at the Cubs. They'll be back in the American League all of this week, though, and are facing five of the league's most hittable righties in Joe Blanton, Tommy Hanson, Vance Worley, Kevin Correia and Mike Pelfrey. For what it's worth, the two lefties on tap are pretty hittable themselves.
Approach with caution: Ike Davis, Mets
Davis' dreadful start has the Mets experimenting with other options at first base. He has sat out two of the team's last three games against lefties, which isn't too surprising considering he hit .174 against them last year. It's pretty scary in a week he's scheduled to face four lefties, though, especially when their names are Ted Lilly, Clayton Kershaw, Hyun-Jin Ryu and Cole Hamels.

No-brainers: Joey Votto, Albert Pujols, Prince Fielder, Adrian Gonzalez, Buster Posey, Edwin Encarnacion, Joe Mauer, Billy Butler, Paul Goldschmidt
Advisable starts: Carlos Santana, Allen Craig, Anthony Rizzo, Paul Konerko, Freddie Freeman (oblique), Ryan Howard, Nick Swisher, Mark Trumbo, Chris Davis, Mike Napoli, Matt Carpenter, Lance Berkman, Todd Frazier, Michael Cuddyer (hamstring), Kendrys Morales
Shaky starts: Ike Davis, Eric Hosmer, Justin Morneau, Adam LaRoche, Kevin Youkilis, Adam Dunn, Brandon Belt, Yonder Alonso, Mark Reynolds, Michael Young, Brandon Moss, Chris Carter
Strictly AL/NL-only: Carlos Pena, Justin Smoak, Adam Lind, Jeff Keppinger, Matt Adams, Chris Johnson, Garrett Jones, Chris Parmelee, Mitch Moreland, Greg Dobbs
Don't bother: Todd Helton, Jordan Pacheco, John Mayberry, James Loney, Yuniesky Betancourt, Lyle Overbay, Mark Teixeira (wrist), Corey Hart (knee), Logan Morrison (knee), Mike Olt, Jonathan Singleton,

Second base

Aaron Hill's fractured hand isn't all bad news for Fantasy owners. In his absence, Martin Prado has gotten a chance to play second base and is now only two games shy of gaining eligibility at the position in standard leagues. He's not playing it every day, so he may not gain it over the weekend, but if he does, he's a no-brainer at the position for next week.

Worth a second look: Josh Rutledge, Rockies
Rutledge isn't off to the greatest start with the bat, but his feet have helped make up for it. After going 7 for 7 on stolen bases in 73 games last year, he's already 4 for 4 this year, which helps explain why he's the No. 3 second baseman in Head-to-Head leagues over the last seven days. Clearly, new manager Walt Weiss is going to let him run. With three games at Coors Field and four games at Arizona this week, he should get on base often to make an impact in mixed leagues.
Approach with caution: Jason Kipnis, Indians
Looks like Kipnis has picked up where he left off in the second half last year, which isn't at all a good thing. Though the elbow injury that has already sidelined him for four games shouldn't hold him out over the weekend, it likely won't help him snap out of his season-opening 4-for-32 slump. Neither will his matchups against Jose Quintana, Chris Sale and Jake Peavy to begin this week.

No-brainers: Robinson Cano, Dustin Pedroia, Ian Kinsler, Ben Zobrist, Brandon Phillips, Chase Utley
Advisable starts: Jose Altuve, Matt Carpenter, Rickie Weeks, Josh Rutledge
Shaky starts: Dan Uggla, Neil Walker, Jason Kipnis, Howie Kendrick, Jedd Gyorko, Daniel Murphy, Danny Espinosa (wrist), Marco Scutaro, Dustin Ackley, Emilio Bonifacio
Strictly AL/NL-only: Chris Nelson, Kelly Johnson, Omar Infante, Darwin Barney, Donovan Solano, Mark Ellis, Jeff Keppinger, Chris Getz, Cliff Pennington
Don't bother: Yuniesky Betancourt, Eric Sogard, Brian Dozier, Daniel Descalso, Maicer Izturis, Aaron Hill (wrist), Brian Roberts (hamstring), Gordon Beckham (wrist), Logan Forsythe (foot), Jurickson Profar, Jemile Weeks, Kolten Wong

Third base

Luis Jimenez has started the last five games at third base for the Angels with Alberto Callaspo sidelined by a tight calf. Callaspo's injury might not require a DL stint, but it's not like the Angels are itching to get him back in the lineup. He was always miscast as an everyday player. Jimenez, thought not a top prospect, has hit at every level of the minors and is off to a terrific start in Callaspo's place. His lack of plate discipline will likely catch up to him sooner or later, but AL-only owners should take note of him.

Worth a second look: Kyle Seager, Mariners
Seager's batting average has been hovering around the Mendoza line, but he entered play Thursday with a modest six-game hitting streak and an MLB-leading seven doubles. His matchups this week against Brad Peacock, Bud Norris, Lucas Harrell, Garrett Richards, C.J. Wilson, Joe Blanton and Jason Vargas should turn that little flicker into a full-fledged flame, especially since five of them are righties. He hit only .237 against lefties last year.
Approach with caution: Kevin Youkilis, Yankees
Even if Youkilis' new stance is largely responsible for this hot start, he's probably due for a bit of a cool down and has the kind of matchups this week that might even make it a foregone conclusion. In a seven-game week, he's facing Matt Moore, David Price, Alex Cobb, Josh Johnson and R.A. Dickey, among others, so if you've been itching to swap him out for a Matt Carpenter or Brett Lawrie type, this week is a good time to do so.

No-brainers: Miguel Cabrera, Evan Longoria, Adrian Beltre, David Wright, Ryan Zimmerman (hamstring), Martin Prado, Pablo Sandoval
Advisable starts: Chase Headley, Matt Carpenter, Will Middlebrooks, Todd Frazier, Kyle Seager
Shaky starts: Brett Lawrie, Kevin Youkilis, David Freese, Pedro Alvarez, Mike Moustakas, Jedd Gyorko, Manny Machado, Lonnie Chisenhall, Michael Young, Josh Donaldson, Trevor Plouffe
Strictly AL/NL-only: Chris Nelson, Chris Johnson, Jeff Keppinger, Juan Francisco, Placido Polanco, Matt Dominguez, Luis Cruz, Greg Dobbs, Alberto Callaspo (calf)
Don't bother: Yuniesky Betancourt, Luis Valbuena, Eric Chavez, Jordan Pacheco, Maicer Izturis, Daniel Descalso, Hanley Ramirez (thumb), Aramis Ramirez (knee), Alex Rodriguez (hip), Wilson Betemit (knee), Ian Stewart (quadriceps), Wilson Betemit (knee), Nolan Arenado, Nick Castellanos, Anthony Rendon

Worst Five Hitting Schedules
Team Schedule
1. Tigers KC3, ATL3
2. Mets LAD3, PHI3
3. Yankees @TB3, TOR4
4. Royals @DET3, CLE3
5. Padres MIL3, SF3

Shortstop

Hanley Ramirez is looking to surprise people with how quickly he returns from thumb surgery, saying it will be "way sooner" than the original mid-May timetable. How much is "way" is a judgment call, of course, but I'm guessing it measures weeks rather than days, which means I'm on the lookout for Ramirez to return before the end of April. I'm not suggesting anyone should start him this week, but I'd keep an eye out for further developments this weekend.

Worth a second look: Andrelton Simmons, Braves
Granted, a thumb injury in the season's opening week didn't help, but Simmons hasn't performed up to anyone's expectations so far. The home run Sunday was a good sign, but considering he has only one double, the pop has been lacking so far. I get the feeling we'll see more of it during the Braves' three games at Coors Field to open the week. In a lineup full of home run hitters, all Simmons needs to do to matter in mixed leagues is get on base.
Approach with caution: Alcides Escobar, Royals
Escobar was a firecracker to start the year but has been a dud over his last six games, going 4 for 25. As rarely as he walks, when he's slumping, it really shows. He still has top-10 potential at shortstop, but Max Scherzer, Justin Verlander and Anibal Sanchez won't help him get back on track this week. Go with a Simmons or Everth Cabrera instead.

No-brainers: Troy Tulowitzki, Ben Zobrist, Ian Desmond, Starlin Castro, Jimmy Rollins
Advisable starts: Elvis Andrus, Asdrubal Cabrera, Jed Lowrie, Josh Rutledge, Andrelton Simmons
Shaky starts: Everth Cabrera, Alcides Escobar, Jean Segura, Danny Espinosa, Marco Scutaro, J.J. Hardy, Zack Cozart, Jhonny Peralta, Brandon Crawford
Strictly AL/NL-only: Yunel Escobar, Stephen Drew, Cliff Pennington, Eduardo Nunez, Ruben Tejada, Luis Cruz, Pete Kozma
Don't bother: Marwin Gonzalez, Eric Sogard, Brian Dozier, Maicer Izturis, Deniel Descalso, Clint Barmes, Alex Gonzalez, Jose Reyes (leg), Hanley Ramirez (thumb), Erick Aybar (heel), Derek Jeter (ankle), Hiroyuki Nakajima (hamstring), Dee Gordon, Billy Hamilton

Outfield

In Minnesota, Oswaldo Arcia has taken the roster spot of Darin Mastroianni, who had to go on the DL with an ankle injury, but unlike Mastroianni, he has little experience in center field. This should bother Fantasy owners for two reasons. One, it means Aaron Hicks' job is safe for the time being. Two, it means Arcia, who's looking like the more intriguing of the two prospects right now, won't be getting regular at-bats. Hopefully, he steals enough from Chris Parmelee and Ryan Doumit to factor in deeper leagues, but you shouldn't roll the dice on him just yet.

Worth a second look: Carlos Gomez, Brewers and Coco Crisp, Athletics
Gomez was a popular drop when he got off to a 6-for-37 start, but with three consecutive three-hit games, his batting average is suddenly up to .300. Granted, he needs to pick it up on the base paths since steals are supposed to be his primary contribution, but when he's hitting well, I'd trust in him. He faces hittable pitchers like Jason Marquis, Tyson Ross, Edinson Volquez and Ted Lilly this week. As for Crisp, even with his recent bout with a groin injury, he's still the highest scoring outfielder in Head-to-Head leagues so far, outpacing even Justin Upton. He's perennially one of the more underrated hitters in Fantasy when he's able to take the field, so you want him active while he's performing well.
Approach with caution: Ichiro Suzuki, Yankees and Torii Hunter, Tigers
Suzuki is almost too obvious given the way he's started the season, but it's worth noting that, perhaps in response to his sub-.200 batting average, the Yankees have taken to sitting him in favor Brennan Boesch against left-handers. They face four lefties in their seven games this week, and the three righties are Alex Cobb, Josh Johnson and R.A. Dickey. Hunter, meanwhile, is off to a hot start, but it's been mostly singles so far. Against Wade Davis, James Shields, Ervin Santana, Paul Maholm, Kris Medlen and Mike Minor this week, he might have trouble maintaining that pace.

No-brainers: Ryan Braun, Mike Trout, Matt Kemp, Andrew McCutchen, Justin Upton, Giancarlo Stanton, Josh Hamilton, Carlos Gonzalez, Ben Zobrist, Bryce Harper, Matt Holliday, Adam Jones, Jacoby Ellsbury, Jay Bruce, Shin-Soo Choo, Alex Gordon, Alex Rios
Advisable starts: Jose Bautista (back), Martin Prado, Jason Heyward, Allen Craig, Austin Jackson, Desmond Jennings, B.J. Upton, Melky Cabrera, Michael Morse, Shane Victorino, Josh Willingham (illness), Andre Ethier, Nick Swisher, Nelson Cruz, Mark Trumbo, Nick Markakis, Carl Crawford, Jayson Werth, Norichika Aoki, Dexter Fowler (foot), Chris Davis, Matt Carpenter, Carlos Gomez, Hunter Pence, Coco Crisp, Michael Cuddyer (hamstring)
Shaky starts: Carlos Beltran, Ben Revere, Josh Reddick, Starling Marte, Evan Gattis, Angel Pagan, Alejandro De Aza, David Murphy, Torii Hunter, Ichiro Suzuki, Alfonso Soriano, Brett Gardner, Domonic Brown (back), Ryan Doumit, Lucas Duda (back), Denard Span (illness), Carlos Quentin, Jon Jay, Lorenzo Cain, Brandon Moss, Colby Rasmus, Franklin Gutierrez, Gerardo Parra
Strictly AL/NL-only: Chris Young, Nate Schierholtz, Daniel Nava, Leonys Martin, Jackie Bradley, Emilio Bonifacio, Juan Pierre, Aaron Hicks, Andy Dirks, Justin Ruggiano, Matt Joyce, Cody Ross, Michael Brantley, Garrett Jones, Dayan Viciedo, Peter Bourjos, Justin Maxwell, Drew Stubbs, Nate McLouth, Will Venable, Raul Ibanez, Oswaldo Arcia, Jeff Francoeur, Nolan Reimold, David DeJesus, Chris Denorfia, Chris Heisey, Chris Parmelee, Rajai Davis, Greg Dobbs, Jordany Valdespin, Michael Saunders (shoulder)
Don't bother: Travis Snider, Jonny Gomes, Collin Cowgill, A.J. Pollock, J.D. Martinez, Marlon Byrd, John Mayberry, Stephen Lombardozzi, Eric Young, Gregor Blanco, Yoenis Cespedes (hand), Curtis Granderson (forearm), Michael Bourn (hand), Corey Hart (knee), Adam Eaton (elbow), Jason Kubel (quadriceps), Ryan Ludwick (shoulder), Delmon Young (ankle), Darin Mastroianni (ankle), Cameron Maybin (wrist), Logan Morrison (knee), Wil Myers, Oscar Taveras, Yasiel Puig, Christian Yelich

Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us on Twitter @CBSFantasyBB or Scott White at @CBSScottWhite . You can also e-mail us at fantasybaseball@cbsinteractive.com .

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Player News
Reds' Brennan Boesch to see time at first base this spring
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:58 pm ET) Reds manager Bryan Price indicated Friday that outfielder Brennan Boesch would see time at all three outfield spots as well as at first base as he competes for a roster spot this spring, MLB.com reports.

"We already know he's a terrific player," Price said of Boesch, who has never played first base professionally. "He kind of got banged up and lost his way a little bit, but I think he feels -- and we feel -- that he's back on top of his game, and maybe his best days are ahead of him."

Boesch said he doesn't see the battle for a reserve outfield role as a "competition."

"I only care about the competition against the pitcher, and that's really as basic as I keep it," Boesch said. "You aren't competing against other players. We're all on the same side here. We're all wearing Red jerseys. Let the chips fall where they may."

Boesch struggled in limited time with the Angels in 2014 but hit .332/.381/.636 with 25 home runs, 85 RBI and 10 stolen bases in 374 at-bats with Triple-A Salt Lake.


Dodgers' Mattingly: Turner has 'put a lot of time in and it shows'
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:44 pm ET) Dodgers infielder Justin Turner earned a nonroster invitation to the team's camp last year and ended up leading the team in batting average, and he's been working on his body like a fiend over the winter, MLB.com reports.

"Going into last year, we felt if he played every day, he'd get in trouble, and we found that out, but this year maybe he can handle more," manager Don Mattingly said Friday. "He's really been diligent about his work, been at Dodger Stadium almost daily. He's put a lot of time in and it shows."

Turner credited strength-and-conditioning coach Brandon McDaniel for his workout success.

"Brandon did everything. He's been a one-man wrecking crew," said Turner. "He and his family deserve the credit. I've been able to establish a routine and train consistently. Before I signed a year ago, I was on my own, going to 24 Hour Fitness, had to coordinate everything myself."

Turner added that he lost 18 pounds this winter through a healthier diet. Mattingly said that he intends to use the infielder at the corner-infield positions and also potentially up the middle.


Nationals' Matt Skole: 'I'm eating healthy and working hard'
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:29 pm ET) Nationals first baseman Matt Skole missed most of 2013 after undergoing Tommy John surgery and struggled at the plate in 2014 but showed up to camp in better shape and will look to rebound in 2015, MLB.com reports.

"This offseason, I had a little more time to work on my body," Skole said. "I really got after it in the weight room. I ate right. I ate healthy. I think that was probably the biggest difference for me. I'm about the same weight as I was. I just leaned out a little bit. I'm eating healthy and working hard."

Skole worked with hitting coordinator Troy Gingrich for a month after the season and learned to keep his hands up in order to hit the ball consistently after having his hands too low during his down 2014 season.

"After taking a year off, it was more difficult than I thought it would be," the left-handed-swinging Skole said. "But coming back, I turned some corners, made some strides as far as getting to know myself as a player and know the things I need to fix. I think everything I did last year was a stepping stone for this year."

Skole hit .241/.352/.399 with 14 home runs and 68 RBI in 461 at-bats with Double-A Harrisburg last season.


Report: Dodgers sign center fielder Travis Witherspoon
by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(9:22 pm ET) The Dodgers signed center fielder Travis Witherspoon to their organization, according to a report from Baseball America

Witherspoon has previously been in the Angels and Mariners organizations. In six years of minor-league ball, Witherspoon has posted a career batting average of .252 with 68 home runs. He hit a minor-league single-season best 15 home runs in 2014 with the Mariners' Single-A affiliate High Desert Mavericks. 


Phillies' Buchanan 'working on being a complete pitcher'
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:11 pm ET) Phillies pitcher David Buchanan is "working on being a complete pitcher," manager Ryan Sandberg said, per the Philadelphia Inquirer.

The team's coaches spoke with Buchanan in the fall about command and pitch sequencing, executing bunts and thwarting would-be base-stealers, and Sandberg noted while examining the players that arrived early that the pitcher had taken the advice to heart.

"My biggest goal [this spring] is to show our front office and our coaches that I can throw the ball over the plate," Buchanan said. "That's one thing I had success with last year. I wasn't walking guys. I was throwing strikes, and that's what I'm known for. That's why I succeeded in the minor leagues; I was throwing strikes. So that's what I want to do this spring training, is continue to do that, pound the zone, force early contact and keep the ball on the ground."

Buchanan is scheduled to pitch the team's Grapefruit League opener Tuesday against the Yankees.


Giants' Bochy: Hunter Strickland 'needs to get a little smarter'
by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(9:01 pm ET) Giants pitcher Hunter Strickland is ready to learn from his mistakes from the tail end of his 2014 season.

Starting strong once he was called up from Double-A Richmond, Strickland gave up six home runs in the postseason. Giants manager Bruce Bochy said the remedy to put Strickland back on track is simple. 

"He needs to get a little smarter," Bochy said, per MLB.com.  

Strickland will be competing for a spot in the bullpen during spring training. His fastball is a strength, though it's a matter of his command improving on the mound. 

"The failures are what make guys better, I feel like," Strickland said. "I feel like they made me better. Just being in tune with yourself and knowing who you are and what you've got to do. In this game, you're not going to make it too far if you don't have confidence. If you don't believe in yourself, who else is going to believe in you?"


Mets' Nieuwenhuis, den Dekker competing for roster spot
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:00 pm ET) Mets left-handed hitters Kirk Nieuwenhuis and Matt den Dekker will be battling for one roster spot this spring, MLB.com reports.

While Nieuwenhuis is out of options, manager Terry Collins indicated that den Dekker has responded to the team's request that he reduce his strikeouts when sent to Triple-A last season.

"We'll just see how it translates this spring into what kind of an offensive player he can be," Collins said of den Dekker. "We know he's got the defensive skills."

Collins said that whichever outfielder shows the most promise will make the initial 25-man roster.

"He plays the game right. He's fearless," Collins said of Nieuwenhuis. "But right now, we've got to get some offense from one of those two guys. Which one of those two guys is going to be able to come off the bench as a pinch-hitter? The best closers in our division are all right-handed, so the left-handed hitter off that bench is going to be a big piece."


Stephen Strasburg wants to stay with Nationals
by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(8:40 pm ET) Though Stephen Strasburg's agent Scott Boras denied a report that he wanted to be traded in January, the right-handed pitcher said himself that he wants to remain with the Nationals and has no issues with the organization. 

"I haven't said anything like that," Strasburg said in an interview with MLB.com. "I don't feel like that. You have to accept it because that's how the system works. It's like they pick up on any little thing and they twist it. Some people want to turn it to see how many clicks they can get on the webpage."

Strasburg is set to be the ace of a deep rotation that looks to be on of the best in baseball this coming season. With the Nationals winning their second divisional title in the past three seasons, Strasburg said he's happy with the organization. 

"It's the team that drafted me. I love the players here, I love D.C. Winning cures everything, that's for sure," Strasburg said. "I'm excited to be part of the resurgence so far. It's great to see the type of players we bring in here every year. The expectations keep going up and up. Hopefully, we can do big things this year."


Nationals sign pitcher Rich Hill to minor-league deal
by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(8:26 pm ET) The Nationals signed pitcher Rich Hill to a minor-league contract with an invitation to spring training, the team announced Friday night

Hill spent time with the Angels and Yankees in 2014 and posted a 3.38 ERA in 16 appearances. 

His career ERA is 4.72 over 10 years, which includes additional stops with the Cubs, Orioles, Red Sox and Indians. 


Tim Melville, Kyle Lobstein to start Monday and Tuesday for Tigers
by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(8:18 pm ET) Tigers coach Brad Ausmus announced that pitchers Tim Melville and Kyle Lobstein, respectively, will get starts in upcoming games on Monday and Tuesday, according to MLB.com

Melville will start in an exhibition between the Tigers and college team Florida Southern. Lobstein will start in Tuesday's Grapefruit League game against the Orioles. 


 
 
 
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