FANTASY PLAYER UPDATES & NEWS

Ernesto Frieri said one of the reasons he signed with Tampa Bay was for the opportunity to work with pitching coach Jim Hickey.

Frieri has seen the difference working with Hickey has made in the careers of Fernando Rodney, Kyle Farnsworth and Joaquin Benoit and he too would like a chance to return to the 37-save guy he once was when he was with the Angels. Already, Hickey has helped Frieri make adjustsment to his foot placement on the rubber and Frieri is eager to have more done. Considering the uncertainty of Jake McGee's elbow and the inexperience of Brad Boxberger, should the Rays need to call upon Frieri to help in a save sitaution, he wants to be ready for the team. Monitor this situation throughout the spring as he could become a dark horse candidate for the job. Analysis: Howard Bender

Huston Street and the Angels haven't talked about an extension in Spring Training. Street wanted a week or so to settle in first, then they'll start.

That makes perfect sense. Both Street and the Angels want this to happen so they'll amicably sit down to discuss things over the next few weeks. After coming over from the Padres last year, Street notched 17 saves and posted a 1.71 ERA with a 1.18 WHIP and 23:7 K:BB over 26.1 innings. He offers Mike Scioscia a little peace of mind in the ninth. Analysis: Howard Bender

Adam Wainwright expects to pitch in a game in two weeks.

Wainwright is currently dealing with an abdominal strain so he's not going to throw for a few days and the Cardinals will monitor him closely to ensure that he's pain-free before trying to come back. Given the timing here, this shouldn't affect his Opening Day status. Analysis: Howard Bender

Angels outfielder Josh Hamilton will likely be suspended for at least 25 games.

You would have thought the Angels would have had themselves more protected with a relapse clause considering Hamilton's past and the fact that he had a relapse while with the Rangers as well. He's not due back until the end of May, so a 25-game suspension then puts him out for at least another month. He's not being drafted until very late right now and this could/should actually push his ADP down even further. Given the struggles with injuries and again now with substance abuse, he's not even worth the draft-and-stash. Analysis: Howard Bender

Ryan Ludwick went into the Texas Rangers’ first full-squad workout of spring training on Thursday fully healthy for the first time since opening day 2013. “It feels better than it has since 2012,” Ludwick said. “I put the work in, and now we’ll see where it goes.”

Ludwick hit .275 with 53 runs, 26 home runs and 80 RBI for the Reds in 2012. Ludwick will be going to play in Texas which is a favorable home ballpark for power hitters and though he is now 36 years old with consistent playing time could reach the 20-homer plateau.  Analysis: Jonathan Impemba

Giants signed Ronny Cedeno to a minor-league deal.

Cedeno appeared in just seven games for the Phillies last season going 0-for-9 from the plate. Cedeno's last season of consistent play came in 2013 when he .242 over 89 games between the Padres and Astros. Analysis: Jonathan Impemba

Right-hander Max Scherzer is adding a cutter to his existing four-pitch repertoire, The New York Times reported on Thursday.

Pitchers will often toy with different pitches during spring training to see what does and does not work. An effective cutter has proven to a dominating pitch and if Scherzer who is already one of the games best is capable of throwing it with effectiveness he should be in for another incredible season. Analysis: Jonathan Impemba

White Sox executive vice president Ken Williams believes Avisail Garcia can be a 30-stolen base guy.

Garcia is a popular sleeper of many going into the draft this season given him ability to provide both decent pop and speed but to many 30 SB seems like a stretch but this report should only further his hype and cause him to rise in many ADP's going forward. Analysis: Jonathan Impemba

Chase Anderson may have the edge in the competition for the fifth starter in the Diamondbacks rotation.

Anderson finished his rookie season going 9-7 with a 4.01 ERA while striking out 105 batters over 114.1 innings pitched but should only be drafted in deep NL Only leagues as he will likely be more of a match up play in standard leagues. Analysis: Jonathan Impemba

Update: Adam Wainwright (abdominal) will require two weeks of rest, but surgery is not needed.

This is obviously not what anybody who may already own Wainwright want to see at the start of camp and while it's great news that surgery is not required the two weeks of rest will set him back a bit in camp. Analysis: Jonathan Impemba

Joel Hanrahan (Tommy John) is discouraged about his setbacks and unsure about his future.

Hanrahan has not pitched since undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2013. After attempting a few comeback attempts with the Tigers after signing last year it's unfortunate his career could be cut short. Analysis: Jonathan Impemba

Andrew Susac missed his second consecutive day Thursday after having a root canal.

Susac is a catching prospect in the Giants organization who is expected to compete for the back up role behind Buster Posey. Analysis: Jonathan Impemba

Sergio Romo had an X-ray on his pitching hand Wednesday after he was struck by a ball in batting practice. He is expected to be fine.

It was a tough day for the back end of the Giants bullpen as both Romo and closer Santiago Casilla were struck by balls during batting practice. Casillla's X-ray came back clean and as this news item states the Giants expect Romo to be fine as well. Analysis: Jonathan Impemba

Update: Santiago Casilla had X-rays on his left ankle that came back clean.

It was a scary day for the Giants bullpen as both closer Santiago Casilla and set up man Sergio Romo were hit by balls during batting practice. Both X-rays came back clean so owners of both should not be concerned. Analysis: Jonathan Impemba

Rockies manager Walt Weiss said he talked to Corey Dickerson about having better plate discipline in 2015.

Dickerson is coming off a solid sophomore campaign where he hit .312 with 74 runs, 24 hrs, 76 RBI and eight stolen bases. Dickerson had nearly a 3:1 K/BB ratio last season which is likely the reason for Weiss's criticism of his plate discipline. Analysis: Jonathan Impemba
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