The useful news coming out of camps is drying up. Reporters are transitioning to the standard format of regurgitating the boxscore with a few standard (i.e. lame) starting pitcher comments thrown in.
There may be a bit more content coming since I’m not going to New York for Tout Wars and instead it will be online. I will publish something late on Friday. It might be another Mining the News or I might rank the current closer crop.
• Chris Bassitt is likely making the rotation.
Puk’s recent shoulder injury likely flips he and Bassitt’s roles to begin the season. The A’s have not announced an Opening Day starter yet, but let’s assume Mike Fiers gets the nod again. You’re looking at a starting five of Fiers, Sean Manaea, Frankie Montas, Jesus Luzardo and Bassitt.
• Shun Yamaguchi has not perfected a grip on the MLB ball and may be headed to the bullpen.
Yamaguchi, who is a contender for Toronto’s fifth rotation spot but might slot in as a reliever when the team breaks camp, has spent every day of Spring Training getting acquainted with the baseballs he will be using in the Majors. But he admits that his education will continue when he travels to the new locations and the varying climates he will experience for the first time.
Yamaguchi’s primary focus has been on his grip, as he continues to search for the spin he had in Japan. Facing the Yankees at George M. Steinbrenner Field in Toronto’s 4-2 win on Tuesday, the hurler made progress over his three innings, allowing one run — a Kyle Higashioka homer — on two hits with one walk and two strikeouts.
What I took from the article, is that he’s just not comfortable and probably going to relieve. I think his status could change mid-season once everything clicks. I’m backing off for now, but I’ll keep an eye on him and could pick up shares once the Jays believe he is ready.
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