After four straight quality starts to open the season-- although all but one was on the borderline of qualifying as such-- Hughes collapsed a bit Friday against a resurgent Tigers lineup. He gave up a homer for the first time since an April 13 outing against the White Sox, and issued a pair of free passes for the third straight start. As customary, the ball was in the air plenty when Detroit made contact with Hughes' offerings, as he's now surrendered double-digit fly balls in four of his five trips to the mound. He didn't miss many bats at all, inducing only a single swing-and-miss over 81 pitches. Despite the struggles Friday, Hughes has certainly been serviceable, and has received no more than four runs of support from a lackluster Minnesota offense in any of his five starts.
The 23-year-old's forgettable start to the season continued, with Davies giving up at least four runs for the third time in his three trips to the mound. A complete lack of run support by his teammates versus the Marlins' Adam Conley certainly didn't help, as the Brewers found themselves completely blanked until the final frame. Davies didn't help his cause by frequently missing the strike zone, throwing only 54 of his 92 pitches for strikes. He's generated a 10:7 K:BB ratio on the season over 13.1 innings, and will try to right the ship in his next start on Wednesday against the Angels.
He is certainly making progress, as he played catch Saturday and will do so again Sunday before next week's bullpen session. He is eligible to come off the DL during the Twins' series in Chicago next weekend, but it is unclear at this point if that is a realistic expectation. He would likely take the spot of either Tyler Duffey or Alex Meyer in the Twins' rotation, or they could possibly move to a six-man rotation.
The results of his first examination did not rule out Tommy John surgery, and it is starting to look like that is where this situation is heading, as Bassitt had a mid-game velocity dip in his last start, which can often be a precursor for surgery. Jesse Hahn and Sean Manaea figure to stick in the rotation going forward.
He had a 1.72 ERA in three starts at Triple-A, and is ready to to pitch Saturday despite suffering a shoulder contusion earlier in the week. Duffey will stick in the Twins' rotation in the short term, but he may have to impress to hold a spot once Kyle Gibson and Ervin Santana return, likely sometime in May.
The 28-year-old had his shortest stint on the mound of his first five starts in 2016, and the four earned runs he surrendered equaled his highest tally to date. After notching 17 whiffs over the 13 innings prior to Friday's start, Santiago also had pitched a lot more to contact, inducing only four swings-and-misses. He'll try to get back in the win column in his next start, which comes next Wednesday at Miller Park in Milwaukee.
The Cubs' top pitching prospect appears to be past the elbow stiffness that kept him back at extended spring training for the first month of the season. This is excellent news, as dynasty league owners no longer have to worry about the injury turning into something more serious. Underwood should stick at Double-A for most of the season, but could be heard from in single-season leagues in 2017.
The veteran produced his fourth quality start in five games, and encouragingly did not issue a free pass for the first time all season. He still flirted with plenty of potential long-ball disaster by yielding a whopping 21 fly balls, but only yielded one actual homer on the night. Although he's already surrendered an elevated seven dingers over 31 innings in 2016, Lewis has giving up four runs or fewer in all five starts, and only three over his last 13 innings.
As expected, Hahn, who had been battling a blister on his throwing hand, will come up to start Saturday's contest against the Astros. He's off to a strong start at Triple-A, posting a 2.04 ERA with 13 strikeouts through 17.2 innings. In a corresponding move, the A's sent right-hander Andrew Triggs to Nashville.
After getting shelled for 10 hits and six earned runs in his last trip to the mound versus the A's, the 23-year-old rebounded in fine fashion. It was Sanchez's first shoutout performance of the season, and brought his ERA back down to 2.59. Outside of the aforementioned disaster versus Oakland, the third-year pro has been outstanding this season, recording an impressive 29:10 K/BB ratio over 31.1 innings.