Indians closer Chris Perez blew the save Sunday, allowing three runs on three hits and three walks. After Neftali Feliz took the closers job from Frank Francisco, this blown save just adds to the list of possible turnover coming this season. Perez had a chance to keep the job even when Kerry Wood returns from injury, but outings like these sure don’t help.
Justin Verlander is not off to a good start this season, but remember, his ERA in April last season was 6.75.
This spring Mike Leake won the fifth spot in the Reds rotation, skipping the minors all together. In his first start this Sunday, Leake went 6.2 innings and only allowed one run on four hits. While that part of his line looks fine, it was the seven walks that are a major concern. From what Leake has shown in the past, this lack of control is a bit surprising. Perhaps it was just from being nervous in his Major League debut, having not thrown a single inning in the minors. I broke down what to expect from Leake here.
Another issue with Leake’s pro debut was Dusty Baker. Baker’s long history of misusing young pitchers makes it hard not to worry about Leake’s 107 pitches on Sunday. It’s not like they were an easy 107 pitches either as only 57 went for strikes. Leake might have some value in the right matchup this season, but I’m not expecting much on the whole.
The more impressive start came from Tom Gorzelanny, who struck out seven and walked two. Three of those strikeouts came from young Drew Stubbs, but if Gorzelanny can keep up this type of performance, I wouldn’t put a comeback season past him.
Blue Jays shortstop Alex Gonzalez hit two home runs on Sunday giving him four on the year. Gonzalez’s career high in home runs came way back in 2004, when he hit 23. This seems like nothing more than a hot streak for Gonzalez. He has walked exactly zero times on the year and has hit a mere two ground balls and five line drives on the season. Four of his 15 fly balls have gone for home runs, a ratio that is almost certain not to hold up.
Kevin Gregg notched his second save of the season and looks like he’ll get some more save chances like this one on days Jason Frasor needs rest.
I received an email the other day asking about my thoughts on Gordon Beckham’s early struggles. I replied by saying that it was way to early to even worry. Beckham hit his first home run of the season on Sunday. We can’t get too worked up over one week of baseball. Jeff Francoeur is hitting .476 while Gordon Beckham is hitting .227. I’ll give you one guess which player I’d rather have on my team. If Beckham had gone through a rough stretch in the middle of July, no one would care.
Fantasy league standings don’t mean much at this point either. The numbers are greatly skewed at this point, so take a breath and relax.
D-Backs catcher Miguel Montero went down with a knee injury the other day and could be out for a month or longer. In the meantime Chris Snyder will get the bulk of playing time behind the dish. His power potential is worth an add in all deeper leagues.
Kelly Johnson has three home runs on the year. I fully endorse Johnson for a comeback year and possibly even a career year.
Edwin Jackson, on the other hand, I do not endorse. He has given us exactly one great half of a season in his career.
Casey McGehee is not a player that I was very high on coming into this season. However, he just continues to hit and hit in the middle of the Brewers’ lineup. He’s only 51% owned in Yahoo! leagues,