Spring Training Notes: March 12, 2012
I’ve been enjoying my week off by watching unhealthy amounts of Spring Training baseball. Along with MLB Network, I purchased MLB 12: The Show. I created a “Road to the Show” character, but gave up into my third season. A .216 batting average wasn’t worthy of a promotion, I guess. So I started playing online today. I won my first game 6-1 in 13 innings. The Detroit Tigers were my team of choice. My opponent: the Miami Marlins. The graphics in the game are crazy, but everything else is pretty hard. I did, however, have 20 K’s with Justin Verlander.
– Staying with the Tigers, left-handed pitcher Andy Oliver continues to impress. Pitching in extended relief, Oliver tossed 4 scoreless innings against the New York Mets today, striking out 2, while only surrendering 1 hit. He’s pitched 7 innings total this Spring Training and deserves, in my opinion, a long look at the 5th starting job in the Tigers rotation. He’s proven he can pitch in the minors, however, he needs a chance to stick in the majors, rather than being used as a spot starter for Detroit. He’s an interesting piece for fantasy as well because he racks up K’s and can eat innings.
– Colorado Rockies catching prospect Wilin Rosario had a huge day at the plate today. The Rockies defeated the San Diego Padres, 11-2. Rosario went 2-4 with a homerun and 4 RBI. I’ve been a fan of Rosario for a while now. He’s currently battling for the backup job behind Ramon Hernandez, but he can easily steal the role from Hernandez due to Ramon’s health concerns. I have Rosario on my fantasy keeper league and he’s staying put for the time being. He can potentially become a fantasy monster at the catcher position.
– Finally, the Washington Nationals squared off against the St. Louis Cardinals today. Washington won 8-4. There’s a few things that should be noticed. With Albert Pujols leaving St. Louis, manager Mike Matheny is looking for someone to replace both Pujols fielding, and his bat. One option is Matt Adams. the 23-year-old slugged 32 homeruns in Double-A Springfield, while driving in 101 runs. His bat makes him valuable and looks to certainly fill the void left by Pujols. He’s been having a nice spring, but depending on what the Cardinals decide to do with Lance Berkman, he may not start out in the majors.
One of my favorite utility men is Matt Carpenter. He’s got a great story too, if you ever want to look into it. Carpenter went 3-4 today and is now batting over .300 in ST. He deserves a spot on the roster, mainly because he can play everywhere. Who knows, maybe he can become the next David Freese.
Moving to the ‘Nats, TCU alum Matt Purke picked up the win in relief. The 2011 draft pick is considered one of the Nationals top prospects, pending if he can prove he’s healthy. He was once drafted in the first round by the Texas Rangers, but did not sign. After batting injuries in his junior campaign at TCU, Purke’s stock crashed faster than Enron. He’s 1-0 this spring with a 2.70 ERA. I expect him to start at High-A, but he will be closely monitored.