Cubs C Miguel Montero breaks loose with two-homer game
by Marty Gitlin |
(6:41 pm ET) Cubs catcher Miguel Montero had not been making a case early this season for daily duty. That is, until Saturday.

Montero, who has only been a semi-regular this season, slammed his first two home runs of the year in a victory over San Diego. He launched one off starter Tyson Ross in the sixth and another the following inning off Chris Rearick to raise his average from .105 to .174.

Cubs manager Joe Maddon expressed his appreciation for Montero following the game - and not just for what he did on the field against the Padres.

"Miggy is always, always into the game, always," Maddon told ESPN. "I give him credit. He's a (31 year old), but this guy loves to play baseball. don't be misconceived, some guys arent always like that even if they are in the major leagues and have been baseball players. Not everyboy likes to play the game like he does. He has a true passion for it and I really appreciate that."

His first blast would have been the game-winner had the Padres not scored four in the ninth.

Giants place Jake Peavy on 15-day DL with back strain
by Igor Mello |
(6:00 pm ET) The Giants placed starting pitcher Jake Peavy on the 15-day disabled list with a back strain and recalled catcher Andrew Susac from Triple-A Sacramento prior to Saturday's game against Arizona, per the team's official website.

Peavy was unable to make it past the fourth inning in Friday's start against the Diamondbacks, after he began experiencing tightness of the sacroiliac joint in the lower back, which first popped up on him during a long second inning, per Comcast SportsNet Bay Area.

Peavy began the season 0-2 with a 9.39 ERA, a 2.08 WHIP and 7:4 K:BB ratio over 7 2/3 innings. He'll be eligible to return in early May.

Brewers' Ryan Braun bats leadoff for first time in career
by Shawn Krest |
(4:07 pm ET) Brewers right fielder Ryan Braun was slotted in the leadoff position in the team's starting lineup on Saturday, the first time in his career he's batted leadoff. 

The Brewers' lineup had other major changes on Saturday. Martin Maldonado will bat seventh and catch, in just his fourth game of 2015. Regular catcher Jonathan Lucroy replaces Adam Lind at first base. 

"Trying to do something different, getting [Braun] sparked," Roenicke said to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "He's had better at-bats, but just to get his mind off some things and maybe on something else. Then also, I think he is swinging the bat better. He's just not getting hits. Put him in a little different atmosphere. Hopefully he can get on base for us and have the other guys drive him in."

Hector Gomez gets the start at second base, batting sixth. He replaces Scooter Gennett

Logan Schaefer is in center field, batting eighth. It will be his first start of the season.

Derek Norris out of Padres lineup on Saturday
by Shawn Krest |
(11:24 am ET) Padres catcher Derek Norris is not in the team's starting lineup for Saturday's game at the Cubs. 

Norris is replaced in the lineup by Wil Nieves, who will catch and bat eighth in his second game of the 2015 season. 

Devin Mesoraco out of Reds lineup on Saturday
by Shawn Krest |
(10:53 am ET) Catcher Devin Mesoraco is not in the Reds' lineup for Saturday's game at St. Louis. 

Mesoraco was questionable with a hip injury. Brayan Pena will start in his place, batting seventh and catching. 

Yunel Escobar, Wilson Ramos, Tyler Moore out of Nationals' lineup
by Shawn Krest |
(10:49 am ET) Nationals third baseman Yunel Escobar is not in the starting lineup for Saturday's game against the Phillies. Escobar was questionable with a groin injury. He's been replaced by Danny Espinosa, who is batting seventh in the lineup.

Manager Matt Williams said Escobar "felt pretty good" Saturday morning. He will receive an MRI. 

Infielder Emmanuel Burriss is not in the starting lineup for Washington's Triple-A affiliate, Syracuse, leaving open the possibility that Escobar may be placed on the disabled list later today. 

Two other Nationals regulars are out of Saturday's lineup: Catcher Wilson Ramos and left fielder Tyler Moore. Jose Lobaton gets the start at catcher, batting eighth. Clint Robinson is in left, batting fifth. 

Carlos Ruiz, Ben Revere out of Phillies' lineup on Saturday
by Shawn Krest |
(10:39 am ET) Phillies catcher Carlos Ruiz and left fielderBen Revere were not in the team's starting lineup for Saturday's game at Washington. 

Cameron Rupp got the start at catcher, batting eighth. Darin Ruf got the call in left, batting sixth. 

Rockies give Gonzalez, Morneau the night off vs. Dodgers' Kershaw
by Igor Mello |
(4/17/2015) Rockies manager Walt Weiss gave outfielder Carlos Gonzalez and first baseman Justin Morneau the night off Friday against Dodgers right-hander Clayton Kershaw in Los Angeles. Morneau is 0-for-3 lifetime against Kershaw, while Gonzalez has five hits in 30 at-bats against the Dodgers southpaw.

With Gonzalez on the bench, Weiss chose to go with Charlie Blackmon in right field, Corey Dickerson in left field and Drew Stubbs in center field. Wilin Rosario started at first and batted cleanup in place of Morneau.

Saltalamacchia on benching: 'I'm not going to cause a distraction'
by Igor Mello |
(4/17/2015) Marlins catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia told reporters he doesn't agree with manager Mike Redmond's decision to start J.T. Realmuto over the last three games, according to the Palm Beach Post.

"Am I mad? Yeah I'm mad, I want to play," Saltalamacchia said. "I'm not going to hurt this team. I'm not going to be the reason that causes a distraction.

"No hard feelings whatsoever. I want to win. My job is to help the team win so whatever I can do to help is what I'm going to do."

Realmuto was promoted from Triple-A New Orleans on Monday, and is hitting .286 (2 for 7) in three games. Saltalamacchia is off to a slow start, batting .091 (2 for 22) with with one home run in seven games (six starts).

"It's six games in. Six games in is a really tough sample to go off of," Saltalamacchia said. "I've never been in this situation before so it's a little different. Come to the ballpark every day ready to play, do what I can to make the team better, be ready whenever I'm called upon."

Reds C Devin Mesoraco could return this weekend
by Igor Mello |
(4/17/2015) Reds catcher Devin Mesoraco is expected back at some point over the weekend against the Cardinals, according to Mesoraco took part in batting practice, but was not included in the lineup on Friday. He has been sidelined since Saturday with inflammation in his left hip. Manager Bryan Price told reporters he's listed as day to day, and is available to pinch-hit on Friday, per the Cincinnati Enquirer.

"He has a little bit of inflammation in there, so we have to be sensitive to that and don't want to aggravate it and set him back any further, but he's available to hit," Reds manager Bryan Price said, per "If we had to put him back there, we could, but we have other alternatives now with Tucker Barnhart here."

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