Cullen: MLB notes on Bruce, Stroman, Pacheco, Petit, more

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Scott Cullen
5/5/2014 11:59:14 AM
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Trouble in the Reds' outfield, the Blue Jays' rotation could have a new look, an interesting catcher option in Colorado and injuries to Davis, Kipnis, Cain and more.

INJURIES

- Reds RF Jay Bruce is facing knee surgery for a torn meniscus and it could cost him a month of playing time. Chris Heisey, who has shown some pop (43 home runs, .736 OPS in 1218 career plate appearances) takes over in right for the Reds.

- The Reds are also missing LHP Tony Cingrani, who has shoulder tendinitis, but Cincinnati can get away with a four-man rotation for the time being.

- A torn tendon in his right hand leaves RHP Brandon Morrow on the 60-day DL, giving J.A. Happ a chance to return to the rotation. Happ has been rocked in three relief appearances this year, so it may not be long before Marcus Stroman gets his turn. Stroman, a 2012 first-round pick, has been recalled from Triple-A Buffalo, where he was 2-2 with a 1.69 ERA, 1.09 WHIP and 36 strikeouts in 26 2/3 innings. Stroman starts in the bullpen but figures to be next in line for a rotation opening.

- With 1B Chris Davis on the DL due to a strained oblique, Steve Pearce is getting regular playing time for the Orioles. Pearce has done little (.222 AVG, .556 OPS) in 27 plate appearances this year, but since joining the Orioles in 2012, he has seven home runs, 29 RBI, a .253 average and .748 OPS in 248 plate appearances.

- A strained hamstring has put White Sox CF Adam Eaton on the DL, giving Jordan Danks a shot at some regular playign time. In 300 career plate appearances, Danks is hitting .207 with a .606 OPS and a dozen stolen bases, so he hasn't clicked in the bigs yet, but had a respectable .772 OPS in four seasons (1566 plate appearances) at Triple-A.

- Indians 2B Jason Kipnis is out with a strained oblique, and the Tribe has turned to 21-year-old Jose Ramirez. Ramirez doesn't have any power to speak of, but hit .308 with a .765 OPS and 75 stolen bases, in 1172 minor-league plate appearances.

- Need a catcher? While Rockies C Wilin Rosario deals with a viral infection, consider Jordan Pacheco, who is the primary backup in Colorado. Pacheco had played primarily first and third base with the rockies, but, prior to this season, had seen action at catcher in 22 of 213 career games. This year, Pacheco has caught in 10 games, and is hitting .278 with a .769 OPS. He hasn't hit enough to have value as a corner infielder, but as a catcher? That's a different story.

- Tigers RHP Anibal Sanchez is on the DL due to a laceration on his finger, giving LHP Robbie Ray (3-2, 1.53 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 21 K, 29 1/3 IP at Triple-A) a turn in the Detroit rotation. Ray was acquired from Washington as part of the Doug Fister trade in the offseason.

- A run-in with a kitchen knife has sent Giants RHP Matt Cain to the DL, opening up a spot in the rotation for Yusmerio Petit, the 29-year-old who has a 3.31 ERA in 73 1/3 innings with the Giants since 2012.

- Angels 3B David Freese suffered a broken finger on the weekend, leaving the hot corner in the hands of Ian Stewart, the one-time top prospect who has power (hit 25 HR in 2009), but is hitting .186 with seven home runs in 396 plate appearances since the start of 2011.

- Twins RHP Mike Pelfrey is sidelined with a groin problem, giving Samuel Deduno a chance to return to the starting rotation. Deduno's strikeout rate has improved, working out of the bullpen this year, though he's also giving up more base-runners than he did last season, when he was 8-8 with a 3.83 ERA and 1.35 WHIP in 18 starts for the Twins.

GOOD ADDS (Available in at least 40% of TSN leagues)

Jhonny Peralta, SS, St. Louis - 7 HR, 15 RBI, .222 AVG, 13 R, 108 AB (Available: 48.6%)

Omar Infante, 2B, Kansas City - 2 HR, 19 RBI, .282 AVG, 13 R, 110 AB (Available: 49.5%)

Todd Frazier, 3B, Cincinnati - 5 HR, 18 RBI, .269 AVG, 17 R, 3 SB, 97 AB (Available: 40.6%)

Chris Young, CF, N.Y. Mets - 2 HR, 9 RBI, .273 AVG, 10 R, 3 SB, 55 AB (Available: 95.8%)

Juan Francisco, 1B, 3B, Toronto - 3 HR, 6 RBI, .277 AVG, 8 R, 47 AB (Available: 98.7%)

Corey Kluber, RHP, Cleveland - 2-3, 3.60 ERA, 1.36 WHIP, 48 K, 45 IP (Available: 82.4%)

Travis Wood, LHP, Chicago Cubs - 2-3, 3.35 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 37 K, 37 2/3 IP (Available: 86.1%)

Jonathon Niese, LHP, N.Y. Mets - 2-2, 2.20 ERA, 1.04 WHIP, 24 K, 32 2/3 IP (Available: 77.0%)

CLOSER NOTES

- Sergio Santos has lost the Blue Jays' closer gig after blowing back-to-back save appearances. Aaron Loup is the short-term option there, while Casey Janssen is due back from injury soon.

- After being removed from the closer's role, Angels RHP Ernesto Frieri may be about to reclaim the job from sidearmer Joe Smith. Frieri ha worked four perfect relief outings since he was bumped from the job.

- The lonely Houston Astros closer job is being split, by Anthony Bass and Chad Qualls. As if one couldn't handle all those opportunities.

- Oakland's Jim Johnson has pitched 10 1/3 IP since he was knocked out of the closer's job, but that stretch has put him at the head of the committee which includes Luke Gregerson and Sean Doolittle.

Scott Cullen can be reached at Scott.Cullen@bellmedia.ca and followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/tsnscottcullen. For more, check out TSN Fantasy on Facebook.

Jay Bruce (Photo: The Canadian Press)

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(Photo: The Canadian Press)
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