Royals' Paulo Orlando makes triples history Monday
The triple was Orlando's fifth in his first seven games, setting a new major-league record for the fewest games to hit five triples to open a career, MLB.com reports. He said he knows pretty soon after making contact whether he has a chance at a triple.
"Usually when it gets over the infielder's head," he said. "… The whole game, I tried to pull everything. But the last pitcher, we got a report that he threw a little cutter, so I tried to think right side."
Orlando has an added chance at collecting base hits at home due to Kaufman Stadium's spacious gaps.
"It helps," manager Ned Yost said of the bigger ballpark. "But if you watch him fly around the bases, he's going to hit triples in any ballpark when he puts the ball in the gap."
Orlando has hit .269/.345/.654 in 26 at-bats.
Astros' bullpen steps up in win vs. Mariners Monday
"You can tell everyone out there has confidence," Sipp said after the game, per MLB.com. "You can flip a coin and put any guy out there at any given time. And you know it's like a friendly competition -- see who can be the best guy out there and you know, hopefully we're all out there sitting on ones [ERA] at the end of the year, high-fiving, trying to see who can get down to point zero something. It's one of those things like winning [being] contagious; successful bullpens kind of feed off each other also."
The bullpen has delivered a 2.06 ERA in 48 innings, giving them the third-best mark in the majors. Astros relievers have also struck out 49 batters while issuing just 11 walks.
"The way we're lined up, we've got a lot of weapons in the bullpen," manager A.J. Hinch said. "Eventually, we'd like to not use them so often and so early, but tonight we needed everything we could."
Rockies' De La Rosa pins poor season debut on being 'really excited'
De La Rosa was roughed up for nine runs (seven) earned on nine hits and one walk in two innings.
"He got ambushed there, and I think it made it tougher to find a rhythm, especially after being out for so long," manager Walt Weiss said, per MLB.com.
De La Rosa blames his struggles on perhaps being a little too antsy to finally make his season debut.
"It's my first start," De La Rosa said. "Been pitching in Triple-A, but it's not the same. I was really excited. Hope I can be more calm next time and get better.
"I was overthrowing a lot. Got excited and was trying to throw as hard as I can. You can't make outs if you don't have command. It happened today. My command wasn't good.
"When I tried to throw in, the ball was in the middle. When I tried to throw away, it ran to the middle, too. I think I can fix it. My command wasn't there. I made really bad pitches today, and they hit it really good."
Confidence a driving force behind Anthony DeSclafani's fast start
It's been a nice turnaround for the right-hander, who struggled in his first stint in the majors in 2014 with the Marlins.
"Obviously, I believe in myself," DeSclafani said, per MLB.com. "Any big leaguer who is up here believes in himself. I just try to stay consistent in my mindset, on a day-to-day basis, on an outing-to-outing basis.
"You've just got to do your best to execute your pitches and let the defense play behind you. And they've been phenomenal. I've felt great with this team since Day 1. They've been really great and supportive, and I can't ask for anything more than that."
The Reds have been particularly impressed with DeSclafani's approach, makeup and demeanor.
"He's just an inherently confident guy," manager Bryan Price said. "That's one thing we ask our pitchers to do, is to be emotionally stable when they pitch. He's throwing the ball really well; he's throwing three pitches for strikes. He's doing all the little things. He's got a really nice changeup that he's developed here through spring training and into the early part of the season. I think it's a necessary pitch for Anthony to be a quality starting pitcher.
"There's something to be said for young guys getting their feet wet at the big-league level and he's done it with some style. He's been very effective for us. We hope to see that trend continue."
Report: Angels map out comeback plan for Josh Hamilton
The Angels have mapped out a comeback plan for Josh Hamilton that could have the troubled outfielder back on the field by early June, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Hamilton would report to extended spring training for two-to-three weeks of work before going out on a minor-league rehab assignment. He's expected to report to Arizona for extended spring training "sooner rather than later," per the report, but the team has yet to make any announcement of a resolution with Hamilton.
Though the tentative plan is in place, it doesn't guarantee that Hamilton will play for the Angels again, but it does give the team time to evaluate the outfielder before a decision needs to be made. The Angels owe Hamilton $83 million through 2017.
"He's part of the team," reigning MVP Mike Trout said. "I'm sure, when he's fully healthy, we'll see him back."
Mets' Alderson says Marlins haven't been in contact about Backman
Backman's name was linked to a Miami Herald report indicating Backman would be a candidate to be the Marlins manager, if the team opted to fire Mike Redmond after a poor start to the season.
“They have to go through us. He’s under contract,” Alderson said about Backman. “I’d rather not speculate on that.”
Redmond is in his third season as the Marlins manager. He has a 142-195 record, which includes a 3-10 start this season. He did not lead the Marlins to the playoffs in his first two seasons.
The 55-year-old Backman spent 14 seasons in the majors (1980-93), primarily playing for the Mets. Backman is in his third season as the Mets' Triple-A manager. He was the 2014 PCL Manager of the Year.
Backman, who is in his 13th season managing in the minors, entered 2015 with a 12-year managerial record of 763-690 (.525), which included stints with the White Sox, Diamondbacks and Mets organizations and the Independent League, per MiLB.com.
Tigers' Joba Chamberlain gets out of jam in win Monday
"I live for this stuff and these situations," Chamberlain said about the eighth-inning role, per MLive.com. "You get to face one of the best players in the league and get a chance to go do your thing."
Chamberlain threw just two pitches to rack up his two big outs Monday.
"He's had experience pitching in the eighth inning for us last year," manager Brad Ausmus said Monday. "And for the vast majority of the year he did it very well. I knew he could handle the pressure."
Chamberlain endured a rough spring but has posted 2 1/3 scoreless innings in his three appearances this season.
Mets' Alderson: David Wright is 'on schedule' in return from injury
“He’s on schedule,” Alderson said Monday during a signing of his biography, “Baseball Maverick,” per the New York Post. “I wouldn’t say he’s ahead of schedule, but he’s not behind schedule.”
Yankees rob Tigers' Victor Martinez of two hits Monday
"What can you do? You do what you can control, which is putting a good swing on the ball," Martinez said. "They had pretty good defense in the outfield, might be one of the best in the game, especially with (Brett) Gardner and (Jacoby) Ellsbury. Nothing surprises me about that."
Martinez, who underwent an MRI on his knee last week, said he came out of Monday's game fine and that he wants to play again Tuesday.
Cubs' Castro says he's out to prove he is 'no joke' defensively
"I have good talent to be a good shortstop," Castro said, per MLB.com. "I don't want to be no joke anymore. I'm going to try to make every play aggressive. If it happens, it happens.
"[Manager Joe Maddon] says the most impressive thing for him is, 'Next year in front of home plate, they give you a Gold Glove [Award]. It's really important to me, too."
Thus far, the results have been positive for Castro. He has committed just one error in 12 games, resulting in a .983 fielding percentage. He has 21 putouts, 36 assists and has turned three double plays.
Castro's teammates and coaches are taking notice.
"I saw something out of him [Monday] that I hadn't seen in a while," starting pitcher Jake Arrieta said. "He seemed to have more of an aggressive nature about him. He was fluid. He was just tremendous at short. He stood out to me on the defensive side."
"I don't know if you've seen him play better shortstop," Maddon said.
At the Fantasy Baseball Today blog, Chris Towers takes a look at some early outliers, to see what might stick.
Giancarlo Stanton hasn't quite lived up to expectations to open the season, and Chris Towers wonders if there is anything to worry about at the Fantasy Baseball Today blog.
Even before the White Sox's phenom makes his first major league pitch, he is highly owned in Fantasy, but Al Melchior makes the case for owners in shallower leagues to give him a try.
Though he wasn't the only topic of conversation, Kris Bryant obviously dominated the discussion on Friday's Fantasy Baseball Today podcast.
The Dodgers may be looking at top prospect Corey Seager as a possible answer at third base.