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  1. Mike Leake jumps right to majors while Stephen Strasburg debuts at Double-A

    Apr 12, 2010, 9:47 AM EDT

    Mike Leake made his MLB debut Sunday, becoming just the fourth pitcher in the past 32 years to go from being drafted to the majors without any time in the minors. He held the Cubs to one run in 6.1 innings, but handed out seven walks and rarely topped 90 miles per hour. Leake is…

  2. What kind of an innings limit does Stephen Strasburg have?

    Apr 12, 2010, 9:15 AM EDT

    Stephen Strasburg’s debut yesterday was pretty electrifying. Supreme heat — his first pitch was 99 m.p.h. — and a good breaking ball clearly overmatched opposing hitters. As Keith Law notes, his changeup needs some work, but otherwise he’s a guy who looks like he won’t be spending a ton of time down on the farm.…

  3. Neftali Feliz replaces Frank Francisco as Rangers closer … for now

    Apr 12, 2010, 8:45 AM EDT

    Early on in spring training the Rangers were deciding whether to use Neftali Feliz as a starter or a reliever, but suddenly the 22-year-old phenom has been thrust into the closer role following two blown saves from Frank Francisco. Ron Washington made it clear that the switch is intended to be short term, saying: “We…

  4. Barry Bonds: "I don't lift as heavy weights anymore to be bulky"

    Apr 12, 2010, 8:15 AM EDT

    I suppose that’s low-hanging fruit. Alas.  Point is that Barry Bonds was back in San Francisco yesterday for the reunion of the Giants 2000 team/celebration of ten years of that nice ballpark they have. He hasn’t done much media lately because someone who is indicted on perjury charges is well-advised to never say anything to…

  5. Chris Snyder goes from trade bait to starter after Miguel Montero's injury

    Apr 12, 2010, 7:44 AM EDT

    Arizona unsuccessfully shopped Chris Snyder this offseason, with reports of Toronto pulling out of a swap for Lyle Overbay and Texas balking at an offer for C.J. Wilson, but suddenly the Diamondbacks have plenty of use for the former backup. Miguel Montero suffered a torn meniscus in his right knee Saturday and the injury will…

  6. And That Happened: Sunday's Scores and Highlights

    Apr 12, 2010, 5:47 AM EDT

    Brewers 8, Cardinals 7: I’m in the tri-state area today meeting NBC folks, planning for the future, talking about the State of the Blog, but mostly just convincing them that they’re entrusting their baseball coverage to a real person and not an android or one kid standing on another kid’s shoulders wearing a long overcoat…

  7. The Week Ahead: Twins move into new home

    Apr 12, 2010, 1:39 AM EDT

    For the first time since 1981, the Minnesota Twins will be playing a regular season home game outdoors when they host the Boston Red Sox on Monday. The special occasion is the opening of Target Field, a sparkling new venue that opens its doors just nine years after folks were seriously considering contracting the Twins.…

  8. Former MLBer Benard admits to steroid use

    Apr 11, 2010, 7:02 PM EDT

    Former Giants outfielder Marvin Benard told the Associated Press Sunday that he used steroids during the 2002 season, when the club lost in the World Series to the Angels. Benard played nine major league seasons — all of them with the Giants — and called it quits after 2003.  He hit .276/.321/.407 in ’02 with…

  9. UPDATED: Ellsbury diagnosed with rib contusion

    Apr 11, 2010, 6:18 PM EDT

    UPDATE: Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald says the X-rays were negative.  Ellsbury only has a contusion and should be back in a few days. 6:06pm: Dan Barbarisi of the Providence Journal reports that Red Sox left fielder Jacoby Ellsbury was pulled from Sunday’s game after a collision with third baseman Adrian Beltre.  Ellsbury suffered…

  10. Ryan Perry provides nice father-son moment

    Apr 11, 2010, 5:41 PM EDT

    In sports we often get some of the best stories.  Today, thanks to Tigers reliever Ryan Perry and MLive.com’s Steve Kornacki, we have another.  Perry, a 23-year-old promising relief prospect, recorded the first save of his young career Saturday with 1 1/3 innings of flawless pitching against the Indians.  He wanted to the give the…

  11. Strasburg, Chapman deliver in openers

    Apr 11, 2010, 4:24 PM EDT

    UPDATE: Strasburg allowed four runs — one earned — over five innings and tallied eight strikeouts against two walks.  According to the AP he was clocked consistently in the 97-98 MPH range.  Chapman tossed 4 2/3 innings down in Louisville, fanning nine batters and allowing one earned run on five hits.  The Cincinnati Enquirer’s John…

  12. Brad Lidge rocked in Single-A rehab start

    Apr 11, 2010, 3:30 PM EDT

    Brad Lidge was shelled for four earned runs in just two-thirds of an inning Saturday in a rehab appearance at Single-A Clearwater. Lidge is trying to make his way back from knee and elbow issues, but was dominated by a batch of low-level minor leaguers in what can only be described as a setback.  The…

  13. Montero has torn mensicus, headed for surgery

    Apr 11, 2010, 2:02 PM EDT

    According to the Arizona Republic’s Nick Piecoro, catcher Miguel Montero has a torn meniscus in his right knee and will need surgery. The Diamondbacks have not revealed a recovery timetable and haven’t said when exactly the procedure will take place, but it sounds like Montero could be done for the year.  Manager A.J. Hinch and…

  14. Nationals place Mike Morse on the disabled list

    Apr 11, 2010, 11:40 AM EDT

    The Nationals placed outfielder Mike Morse on the 15-day disabled list Sunday with a left calf injury, according to MLB.com’s Bill Ladson. Morse had been making a push for the starting right field job in Washington until he was injured Thursday while going after a fly ball.  He’s 1-for-6 on the year, as it stands,…

  15. Rangers closer Frank Francisco is on thin ice

    Apr 11, 2010, 10:24 AM EDT

    Last night Frank Francisco blew his second save of the season and afterward manager Ron Washington would say only “stay tuned” when asked if he’d be sticking with the Rangers’ closer. According to Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News only five pitchers in the previous five seasons blew at least two saves in the…

  16. Webb to resume throwing program Monday

    Apr 10, 2010, 9:21 PM EDT

    Brandon Webb is expected to restart his throwing program on Monday with a game of catch, according to the Arizona Republic’s Nick Piecoro.  The right-hander had a cortisone shot in his right shoulder back in late March and has been taking it easy since. “We all want it to go faster,” D’Backs manager A.J. Hinch…

  17. Zimmerman departs game with hamstring injury

    Apr 10, 2010, 7:50 PM EDT

    Ryan Zimmerman left Saturday’s game against the Mets with a tight left hamstring and, according to MASN’s Ben Goessling, is expected to miss the next few games on the Nationals’ schedule. “It’s nothing major,” Zimmerman said. “It tightened up a little bit today. Riggs (manager Jim Riggleman) thought it’d be a better idea to make…

  18. CC Sabathia throws no-hit ball through seven

    Apr 10, 2010, 6:23 PM EDT

    Yankees ace CC Sabathia delivered 7 2/3 innings of no-hit baseball on Saturday against the Rays.  He cruised through the Tampa lineup with the the help of some excellent defensive plays and came close to making history before catcher Kelly Shoppach blooped a single to left field in the bottom of the eighth inning.  The…

  19. Ted Lilly scratched (again) from rehab start

    Apr 10, 2010, 6:02 PM EDT

    According to Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times, Ted Lilly’s rehab start on Sunday has been pushed back for a second time due to a stiff back. He was originally supposed to start on Friday night. According to Wittenmyer, he’ll throw a bullpen on Monday and is tentatively scheduled to start again on Wednesday. Despite…

  20. Is Mike Lowell ready to hang 'em up?

    Apr 10, 2010, 5:29 PM EDT

    Mike Lowell told reporters that he will “almost certainly” retire at the end of this season, according to Amalie Benjamin of the Boston Globe. Lowell, 36, is in the final season of a three-year, $37.5 million contract, so it seems only appropriate. The .280/.343/.468 lifetime hitter has broken down in recent seasons and hasn’t fully…

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