Fantasy baseball players in the news

by KFFL Staff on February 27, 2013 @ 09:15:01 PDT


First Baseman

1B | Albert Pujols | Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim | Injury, Fantasy
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 1B Albert Pujols (knee) will run the bases soon as he recovers from offseason knee surgery. He has been taking batting practice and running on a treadmill.

1B | Brett Pill | San Francisco Giants | Fantasy
San Francisco Giants 1B Brett Pill, who hit two home runs Tuesday, Feb. 26, has an outside chance to earn a roster spot this spring. However, he has a minor league option remaining, which could hurt his chances. It'll be hard for Pill to find time at first base, though, with 1B Brandon Belt and C Buster Posey expected to split time there. Pill could work at third base and left field as a result.

1B | Justin Smoak | Seattle Mariners | Fantasy
Seattle Mariners manager Eric Wedge has noticed the results of the adjustments that 1B Justin Smoak has made to his swing this spring. "Not only was he driving the ball pull-side, but he was driving the ball the other way too," Wedge said. "His bat head is in the zone longer, he's in a strong position to hit. He's just much more grounded up there than he used to be." Smoak said his left-handed swing is much more compact.

1B | Chad Tracy | Washington Nationals | Injury, Fantasy
Washington Nationals 1B Chad Tracy (shoulder) is expected to be back in the lineup Wednesday, Feb. 27. 1B Micah Owings (wrist) needs a few more days to recover from a sore left wrist.

1B | Brett Wallace | Houston Astros | Fantasy
Houston Astros 1B Brett Wallace, who went 3-for-4 with a home run Tuesday, Feb. 26, put in extra work with hitting coach John Mallee that is showing in the results this spring. "The ball I hit to center was a changeup, and that was something we worked on, being able to stay on my legs and if it's not a fastball down the middle that I won't come out of them and I will stay back on them," Wallace said. "It's definitely something we worked on and it's encouraging and I just have to try to repeat it over and over."

1B | Matt Adams | St. Louis Cardinals | Injury, Fantasy
St. Louis Cardinals 1B Matt Adams (knee) was back in the lineup Tuesday, Feb. 26, and he hit a two-run home run.

Second Baseman

2B | Kelly Johnson | Tampa Bay Rays | Fantasy
Tampa Bay Rays 2B Kelly Johnson is starting in left field Wednesday, Feb. 27.

2B | Chase Utley | Philadelphia Phillies | Fantasy
Philadelphia Phillies 2B Chase Utley was scratched from the lineup Tuesday, Feb. 26, due to the wet field conditions in camp. INF Kevin Frandsen started in place of Utley.


SS | Troy Tulowitzki | Colorado Rockies | Fantasy
The St. Louis Cardinals checked in on the availability of Colorado Rockies SS Troy Tulowitzki at the Winter Meetings.

SS | Eduardo Nunez | New York Yankees | Depth Chart Tidbit, Fantasy
New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman offered an explanation as to why SS Eduardo Nunez won't be used in the outfield with OF Curtis Granderson (forearm) sidelined. "I don't think he profiles as an outfielder with the bat," Cashman said Tuesday, Feb. 26.

SS | Rafael Furcal | St. Louis Cardinals | Injury, Fantasy
St. Louis Cardinals SS Rafael Furcal (elbow) had no setbacks after swinging left-handed Monday, Feb. 25.

SS | Ramiro Pena | Atlanta Braves | Injury, Fantasy
Atlanta Braves INF Ramiro Pena is penciled in as the team's primary middle infield backup with SS Paul Janish (shoulder) not expected to be cleared to play until late March or early April. Pena has experience at shortstop, third base and second base and has also played two games in right field and seven games in center field in the minors.

SS | Ruben Tejada | New York Mets | Injury, Fantasy
New York Mets SS Ruben Tejada (quadriceps) said he's fine and he'll play Wednesday, Feb. 27, according to manager Terry Collins.

Third Baseman

3B | Alberto Callaspo | Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim | Fantasy
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 3B Alberto Callaspo said he has lost 15 pounds since the start of camp.

3B | Will Middlebrooks | Boston Red Sox | Fantasy
Boston Red Sox 3B Will Middlebrooks is getting some extra help in spring training from former Red Sox 3B Mike Lowell. Lowell said he was invited to come by 2B Dustin Pedroia, who felt Lowell could help give Middlebrooks some tips on how the two of them used to work the double play. "Maybe something I say may trigger doing something better on his part. He's very impressive. He has the makings of being an outstanding player," Lowell said.

3B | Nick Castellanos | Detroit Tigers | Injury, Fantasy
Detroit Tigers OF Quintin Berry (knee) is dealing with patellar tendonitis that held him out of action Tuesday, Feb. 26, as a precaution. Manager Jim Leyland said Berry dealt with the issue last year and it's something that continues to flare up at times. OF Nick Castellanos started in left field for the second straight day.

3B | Jeff Keppinger | Chicago White Sox | Injury, Fantasy
Chicago White Sox 3B Jeff Keppinger (shoulder) will sit out a few more days due to a sore right shoulder. 3Bs Brent Morel and Conor Gillaspie will play in his absence.

3B | Trevor Plouffe | Minnesota Twins | Injury, Fantasy
Minnesota Twins 3B Trevor Plouffe (calf) said he is 100 percent recovered from his sore calf and won't be limited after playing in the spring game Tuesday, Feb. 26.


C | Miguel Montero | Arizona Diamondbacks | Injury, Fantasy
Arizona Diamondbacks C Miguel Montero (thumb) is back in the lineup Wednesday, Feb. 27.

C | Russell Martin | Pittsburgh Pirates | Injury, Fantasy
Pittsburgh Pirates C Russell Martin (shoulder) said he feels much better Wednesday, Feb. 27, and will be re-evaluated the following day. He said soreness was from rushing warm-ups.

C | John Baker | San Diego Padres | Injury, Fantasy
San Diego Padres C John Baker (wrist) was scratched from the starting lineup for the Cactus League spring game Tuesday, Feb. 26, due to a sore right wrist. It isn't too serious, though. "During the season, John would be playing," manager Bud Black said.

C | Evan Gattis | Atlanta Braves | Fantasy
Atlanta Braves bullpen coach Eddie Perez is extremely impressed with C Evan Gattis, who is trying to make the team as the fifth outfielder/backup catcher this spring. "With his bat, he might be the third catcher but he'd be my No. 1 hitter from the bench," Perez said. "He can hit. His bat is unbelievable. He can help anybody right now in the big leagues. It's about his position. We're not in the American League. We play (interleague) a lot this year, but you have to find a position for him." Gattis is 5-for-9 with two doubles, a homer and two RBIs in four spring games. Perez said Gattis' catching skills have improved and he's played left field some in camp.

C | Wilson Ramos | Washington Nationals | Injury, Fantasy
Washington Nationals C Wilson Ramos (knee) was hoping to start sliding Tuesday, Feb. 26, his final hurdle before playing in spring games. Ramos hopes to see action by mid-March. "He's very comfortable in his own skin," manager Davey Johnson said. "I'd rather be on the cautious side with him before he gets involved. He feels like he's close, but if we get the doctors on the same page, I'll be ready to let him go run out there."

C | Jason Castro | Houston Astros | Fantasy
Houston Astros C Jason Castro went 2-for-2 and hit his second home run in two spring games Tuesday, Feb. 26. He made an adjustment to stay on the ball more and drive it to the opposite field. "I've been seeing the ball pretty well and been getting some good pitches, trying to be aggressive," he said. "I know it's early in spring and guys throw a lot of fastballs right now. I'm trying to take advantage of that and it's been good so far."


OF | Craig Gentry | Texas Rangers | Injury
Texas Rangers OF Craig Gentry (hamstring) was scratched Wednesday, Feb. 27, with tightness in his left hamstring.

OF | Alex Hassan | Boston Red Sox | Injury
Boston Red Sox OF Alex Hassan (foot) has been doing everything but running. He'll have a follow-up MRI Thursday, Feb. 28.

OF | Alex Gordon | Kansas City Royals | Injury, Fantasy
Kansas City Royals OF Alex Gordon (back) returned to the lineup Wednesday, Feb. 27.

OF | Mike Carp | Boston Red Sox | Fantasy
Boston Red Sox OF/1B Mike Carp is down to 191 pounds from 225 pounds last season.

OF | Quintin Berry | Detroit Tigers | Injury
Detroit Tigers OF Quintin Berry (knee) returned to the lineup Wednesday, Feb. 27.

OF | Wil Myers | Tampa Bay Rays | Fantasy
Tampa Bay Rays manager Joe Maddon said Tampa Bay Rays OF Wil Myers will start the season at Triple-A Durham and the team wants him to focus on being a complete player. Maddon was careful to not criticize the Kansas City Royals' development of Myers, but he said there's a tendency industry-wide "to overlook things" with elite prospects. Maddon had a talk with Myers a few days ago about how, starting in spring training, they want him to work on specifics such as footwork in the outfield, leads on the bases, etc.

OF | Tony Gwynn Jr. | Los Angeles Dodgers | Injury, Fantasy
Los Angeles Dodgers OF Tony Gwynn Jr. (groin) was held out of workouts to nurse a sore left groin muscle. Gwynn said the groin injury is not related to the sports hernia that dogged him all of last season.

OF | Giancarlo Stanton | Miami Marlins | Fantasy
The Miami Marlins and OF Giancarlo Stanton will not talk contract extension in 2013, according to owner Jeffrey Loria. Loria addressed local media in a rare interview following his fire sale of a team whose payroll dropped from $95 million to less than $45 million. "We're absolutely hoping that moment will come," Loria said. "We will cross that bridge at the appropriate moment, absolutely." Stanton has been the subject of widespread trade talk.

OF | Matt Kemp | Los Angeles Dodgers | Injury, Fantasy
Los Angeles Dodgers OF Matt Kemp (shoulder) took batting practice Tuesday, Feb. 26, and he's close to playing in his first spring game.

OF | Brennan Boesch | Detroit Tigers | Injury, Fantasy
Detroit Tigers OF Brennan Boesch (oblique) took batting practice Tuesday, Feb. 26, and SS Ramon Santiago (calf) is feeling much improved from his strained right calf. Boesch hopes to be ready for live batting practice mid-week, and he could play in games by the end of the week. Santiago remains out indefinitely.

OF | Jackie Bradley | Boston Red Sox | Fantasy
Boston Red Sox OF Jackie Bradley is impressing the coaches this spring, and manager John Farrell isn't ruling out the possibility that he'll break camp with the team. However, Bradley is expected to begin the season with Triple-A Pawtucket.

OF | Eric Young Jr. | Colorado Rockies | Fantasy
Colorado Rockies INF/OF Eric Young Jr. is prepared to work at second base, third base and all three outfield positions this spring to maximize his versatility and speed. "I just want to try to get 500-600 at-bats - whatever way they can get me in there," he said. Manager Walt Weiss is looking for ways to make Young the team's super-utility player. Young is playing third base for the first time in his career this spring.

OF | Johnny Damon | free agent | Free Agents, Fantasy
Updating a previous item, New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman reiterated Tuesday, Feb. 26, that the team will not sign free-agent OF Johnny Damon (Indians). "He's just not going to fit our needs," Cashman said. "It's the same reason we didn't bring him in last year. We need somebody who can play the outfield every day."

OF | Chris B. Young | Oakland Athletics | Injury, Fantasy
Oakland Athletics OF Chris B. Young (quadriceps) is being held out again Tuesday, Feb. 26, as a precaution. He's likely to return to the spring lineup Wednesday, Feb. 27.

OF | Kyle Blanks | San Diego Padres | Injury, Fantasy
San Diego Padres OF Kyle Blanks (shoulder) is fully healthy this spring after missing most of last season with a torn left labrum in his shoulder. Blanks hit .286 with two home runs and nine RBIs in 18 games in the Puerto Rican Winter League. "We've seen some very good things out of Kyle," said manager Bud Black. "Hopefully now he can continue to be the player we want him to be, the player he thinks he can be. There's talent in there. He can run, throws well, has good hands, and you look at the Minor League numbers, it's there."

OF | Mike Trout | Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim | Fantasy
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim manager Mike Scioscia is not worried that OF Mike Trout arrived to spring training weighing 10 to 15 pounds more than he did last season, sparking concerns that his speed would suffer this year. "He's 21 now, so the weight is not a concern," Scioscia said. "You don't know how much a body is going to fill out. He's running great. He feels great. He's not too far from where he played last year. Everything he has is muscle. His body (composition) is still terrific, from what the trainers tell me." Trout said he's expecting to lose five to 10 pounds during spring camp.

OF | Domonic Brown | Philadelphia Phillies | Fantasy
Philadelphia Phillies OF Domonic Brown has been impressing manager Charlie Manuel this spring, and Brown hit a towering pinch-hit home run Sunday, Feb. 24. "The last three days he's been swinging good," Manuel said. "Big power and he shows it." Manuel has noted some improvements to Brown's swing.

OF | Michael Brantley | Cleveland Indians | Injury, Fantasy
Cleveland Indians OF Michael Brantley (arm) will miss 10 days after needing 15 stitches in his left arm to close a spike wound from the game Monday, Feb. 25.

Starting Pitcher

SP | Anthony Swarzak | Minnesota Twins | Injury
Minnesota Twins P Anthony Swarzak (ribs) plans to start throwing Thursday, Feb. 28, and could graduate to mound work in a couple weeks.

SP | Max Scherzer | Detroit Tigers | Fantasy
Detroit Tigers SP Max Scherzer will throw live batting practice Wednesday, Feb. 27, and is on track to make his spring debut Saturday, March 2.

SP | Ricky Romero | Toronto Blue Jays | Fantasy
Toronto Blue Jays SP Mark Buehrle is teaching SP Ricky Romero a cutter.

SP | Javier Vazquez | Retired Players | Transaction, Free Agents
Free-agent SP Javier Vazquez (Marlins) will not pitch in the World Baseball Classic and will not make a comeback this year.

SP | Chris Narveson | Milwaukee Brewers | Injury, Fantasy
Milwaukee Brewers SP Chris Narveson (shoulder) will make his first start since last April Wednesday, Feb. 27.

SP | Drew Smyly | Detroit Tigers | Fantasy,
Detroit Tigers SP Drew Smyly has added a change-up to his repertoire, and the results have been encouraging so far this season. "It's still a work in progress," Smyly said. "But it's clicked. It's amazing that the smallest change can make a world of difference. It's a whole other pitch. I'm excited about it." Smyly pitched two innings with one hit and no walks Monday, Feb. 25, in his latest outing.

SP | Phil Hughes | New York Yankees | Injury, Fantasy,
New York Yankees SP Phil Hughes (back) did more work in the pool Tuesday, Feb. 25, but manager Joe Girardi had no update of the pitcher. Hughes said Monday, Feb. 24, that he expects to be re-evaluated Wednesday, Feb. 26.

SP | Clay Buchholz | Boston Red Sox | Injury, Fantasy,
Boston Red Sox SP Clay Buchholz (hamstring) threw 40 pitches over two simulated innings against C/1B Mike Napoli (hips) Tuesday, Feb. 26, and felt good. "It felt more comfortable. I've always felt comfortable since we've been throwing off a mound out of the windup," Buchholz said. "Out of the stretch, I started to find a balance point toward the end. I threw 10 extra pitches to get a good feel for it. The last 10 I threw, I was staying on line and able to get to a balance point without jumping to home plate. I felt really good there at the end."

SP | Matt Garza | Chicago Cubs | Injury, Fantasy,
Chicago Cubs SP Matt Garza (lat) could resume throwing Thursday, Feb. 28, which would be his first time since Feb. 17.

SP | Yu Darvish | Texas Rangers | Fantasy,
Texas Rangers manager Ron Washington said SP Yu Darvish is much more relaxed this spring since he knows what to expect. "Mentally he is in a different place. He knows what to expect and he went out there today and had fun and got the job done," Washington said. "What I see more of this year than last year at this time is he is commanding the ball a lot better because I don't think he is trying to impress anyone. I think the only thing on his menu right now is trying to get ready for another major league season."

SP | Ross Detwiler | Washington Nationals | Fantasy,
Washington Nationals SP Ross Detwiler, who threw first-pitch strikes only 60.5 percent of the time last year, has made it a point to get ahead of hitters this spring. He also wants to use more four-seam fastballs, curveballs and changeups early in the count to throw hitters off. When he got ahead of hitters last year, they had a slash line of only .199/.227/.303 against him with 80 strikeouts and nine walks.

SP | Shelby Miller | St. Louis Cardinals | Injury, Fantasy,
St. Louis Cardinals SP Shelby Miller (shoulder) will pitch in the spring game Saturday, March 2.

SP | Zack Wheeler | New York Mets | Fantasy,
New York Mets pitching coach Dan Warthen sees similarities between SP Zack Wheeler and Washington Nationals SP Stephen Strasburg. "Body type. The free, loose arm. Everything is effortless. The great extension. The releasing the ball out front," Warthen said.

SP | Jenrry Mejia | New York Mets | Injury, Fantasy,
New York Mets manager Terry Collins said SP Jenrry Mejia needs to rediscover the movement on his cut fastball after the youngster allowed five runs, including a grand slam, in an inning Tuesday, Feb. 26. "I haven't been around him much except for the first year," Collins said, referring to 2011, when Collins oversaw the farm system. "I don't know if with the elbow injury, the Tommy John, there are any mechanical changes that have occurred because of that. I don't know." Collins said he could easily see Mejia moving back to the bullpen at some point.

SP | Mike Pelfrey | Minnesota Twins | Injury, Fantasy,
Minnesota Twins SP Mike Pelfrey (elbow) gave up three runs and five hits in 1 2/3 innings Tuesday, Feb. 26, and his fastball was sitting around 88 mph after it usually sits around 92 mph. He's not worried about his velocity in spring camp, though, as he said his fastball usually picks up speed as the spring progresses.

SP | R.A. Dickey | Toronto Blue Jays | Fantasy,
Toronto Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said the team will decide who will serve as SP R.A. Dickey's personal catcher after Dickey and C J.P. Arencibia return from the World Baseball Classic. Arencibia caught Dickey in the spring game Monday, Feb. 25.

SP | A.J. Griffin | Oakland Athletics | Injury, Fantasy,
Oakland Athletics SP A.J. Griffin (hips) said he came into camp with aching hips but is feeling 100 percent after working with trainers.

SP | Chris Young | Washington Nationals | Fantasy,
Washington Nationals SP Chris Young can earn $3.8 million in performance bonuses this year with 30 starts or 180 innings pitched.

SP | Felipe Paulino | Kansas City Royals | Injury, Fantasy,
Kansas City Royals SP Felipe Paulino (elbow) threw off a mound for the first time Tuesday, Feb. 26, since June 6 of last year and said he felt good. Paulino threw 20 pitches.

SP | Danny Duffy | Kansas City Royals | Injury, Fantasy,
Kansas City Royals SP Danny Duffy (elbow) did a 30-pitch workout Tuesday, Feb. 26, and felt good.

SP | Shaun Marcum | New York Mets | Fantasy,
New York Mets RP LaTroy Hawkins, who has yet to throw in a spring game, and SP Shaun Marcum are taking their time this spring and are not injured at all. Marcum made his spring debut last weekend.

SP | Jhoulys Chacin | Colorado Rockies | Injury, Fantasy,
Updating a previous item, Colorado Rockies SP Jhoulys Chacin (toe) said he'll be fine after hurting his left big toe during his outing Tuesday, Feb. 26. He believes he'll make his next spring start Saturday, March 2, and it won't affect his status for the World Baseball Classic. Chacin struck out one of the six batters he faced Tuesday.

SP | Jaime Garcia | St. Louis Cardinals | Injury, Fantasy,
St. Louis Cardinals SP Jaime Garcia (shoulder) made his spring debut Tuesday, Feb. 26, and tossed two scoreless innings with two strikeouts in 43 pitches. "I'm excited about today. This is good, but I'm not going to sit here and tell you this is the best I've ever felt. No. This is good. This is good enough. I'm excited about that," Garcia said.

SP | Tim Lincecum | San Francisco Giants | Fantasy,
San Francisco Giants SP Tim Lincecum's command was off a bit during his spring outing Tuesday, Feb. 26, going to full counts on four of the eight hitters he faced. Sixteen of his 38 pitches were out of the zone. However, he generated five swings and misses and the fastball was coming out his hand crisply.

SP | Zack Greinke | Los Angeles Dodgers | Fantasy,
Los Angeles Dodgers SP Zack Greinke said the amount of money in his deal was the reason he signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers over other teams. "I could play for the worst team if they paid the most," Greinke said. "If the last-place team offers $200 million and the first-place team offers $10 million, I'm going to go for the $200 million no matter what team it was."

SP | Justin Masterson | Cleveland Indians | Fantasy,
Cleveland Indians SP Justin Masterson was informed that he'll be the team's opening day starter against the Toronto Blue Jays April 2.

SP | Kyle Drabek | Toronto Blue Jays | Injury, Transaction, Fantasy,
The Toronto Blue Jays placed SP Kyle Drabek (elbow) on the 60-day disabled list Monday, Feb. 25.

SP | Ryan Rowland-Smith | Boston Red Sox | Transaction,
The Boston Red Sox signed free-agent SP Ryan Rowland-Smith (Mariners) to a minor league deal.

SP | Ted Lilly | Los Angeles Dodgers | Injury, Fantasy,
Los Angeles Dodgers SP Ted Lilly (shoulder) will make his spring debut against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Thursday, Feb. 28. Lilly hasn't had any setbacks this spring and has been eased into action after coming off surgery to fix a frayed left labrum in his shoulder.

SP | Jason Hammel | Baltimore Orioles | Injury, Fantasy
Baltimore Orioles SP Jason Hammel (knee) threw 25 pitches in the cage Tuesday, Feb. 26, and said his knee felt good. He's slated to make six spring starts.

Relief Pitcher

RP | Jordan Walden | Atlanta Braves | Injury, Fantasy
Atlanta Braves RP Jordan Walden (back) was scratched Tuesday, Feb. 26, with a sore back in rainy conditions.

RP | Frank Francisco | New York Mets | Injury, Fantasy
New York Mets RP Frank Francisco (elbow) is throwing off flat ground for the second time this week Wednesday, Feb. 27. He's expected to graduate to throwing from 70 feet.

RP | Eric O'Flaherty | Atlanta Braves | Injury,
Atlanta Braves RP Eric O'Flaherty (back) probably won't make his spring debut until next week because the team is being cautious with his history of back problems. It's solely a precautionary measure.

RP | Joba Chamberlain | New York Yankees | Fantasy,
New York Yankees RP Joba Chamberlain said he wants to return to a starting role. "This is probably going to spark a bunch of stuff and (Yankees PR director Jason) Zillo is going to be mad at me, but it's one of those things where it's like, 'Do you think you have the capability to start? Yes. Do I have four pitches that I can throw for a strike? Yes. Do I have two plus pitches in the bullpen that I can throw at any time? Yes.' I guess I'm trying to have my cake and eat it, too," Chamberlain said. However, manager Joe Girardi and general manager Brian Cashman have no intent of making that move.

RP | Casey Janssen | Toronto Blue Jays | Injury, Fantasy,
Toronto Blue Jays RP Casey Janssen (shoulder) has been long tossing on flat ground to build strength in his surgically repaired shoulder.

RP | Tony Pena | Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim | Injury, Transaction,
The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim reassigned P Tony Pena (elbow) to minor league camp Tuesday, Feb. 26.

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