The Daily Bender: April 27 Cover Image
The Daily Bender: April 27
Howard Bender
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Nick Markakis Headshot

Markakis went 1-for-2 with two walks, an RBI and two runs during Thursday's win over New York.

Currently sporting a respectable .297/.384/.419 slash line with 12 runs, six extra-base hits and 10 RBI, Markakis is off to a serviceable start to 2017. The veteran lacks power upside, but he has the ability to post a solid batting average and on-base percentage while also moving the needle in the runs and RBI columns. He also carries a little extra value in points formats because he hits a lot of doubles.
8:11 am (EST)
Kurt Suzuki Headshot

Suzuki went 1-for-3 with a three-run home run, two walks and two runs scored during Thursday's win over the Mets.

The veteran backstop hasn't been playing regularly, and Thursday's outburst was his first real sign of offense this season. Through 38 plate appearances, Suzuki sports a .179/.342/.286 slash line.
8:06 am (EST)
Matt Harvey Headshot

Harvey said he wasn't physically ready to pitch against Atlanta on Thursday because he completed a weight-lifting session Wednesday, David Schoenfield of ESPN reports.

Harvey allowed six runs on five hits and five walks over just 4.1 innings to the Braves on Thursday, and the outing stands out as his worst of the early season. He entered Thursday with a solid 2.84 ERA and 0.95 WHIP, so while his 6.0 K/9 wasn't jumping off the page, the righty was at least limiting opposing hitters. Assuming he's ready to make his next start, Harvey lines up to face Atlanta again next week.
8:01 am (EST)
Tom Savage Headshot

Savage is Houston's starting quarterback according to head coach Bill O'Brien who made that clear following the team's first-round selection of Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson, John McClain of the Houston Chronicle reports. "Tom is our starter," O'Brien said.

O'Brien said Watson will have to sit and learn behind Savage and Brandon Weeden, though it's clear the long-range plan is for Watson to be Houston's franchise quarterback. Savage, by dint of his experience in the offense, is the likely starter Week 1.
7:30 am (EST)
Marco Hernández Headshot

Hernandez started at third base and went 0-for-3 in Thursday's 3-0 loss to the Yankees.

With Dustin Pedroia back in action, Hernandez was moved from second to third base, a spot where the Red Sox rank 28th in MLB with a .189 batting average and -0.4 WAR. Pablo Sandoval (knee) is on the 10-day disabled list and Hernandez will be part of the relief crew at the hot corner. Josh Rutledge and the newly acquired Chase D'Arnaud also bring gloves that can play third base.
6:37 am (EST)
Dustin Pedroia Headshot

Pedroia went 0-for-4 with a strikeout in Thursday's 3-0 loss to the Yankees.

Pedroia, who turned two double plays in the loss, was in the lineup for the first time since last Friday when he was spiked in the back of knee.
6:30 am (EST)
Chris Sale Headshot

Sale (1-2) allowed three runs (two earned) on eight hits and struck out 10 over eight-plus innings in Thursday's 3-0 loss to the Yankees.

Manager John Farrell let Sale go out for the ninth inning but the left-hander tired and was tagged for two additional runs and three hits. Meanwhile, the Red Sox bats have gone silent, managing just 13 runs and a .202 batting average over the last seven games, including a mere one run in 18 innings against the Yankees. Paucity of offense has been a recurring theme for the team with Sale being its special victim. He has a 1.19 ERA over five starts but has been given four runs of support while he's been on the mound (37.2 innings). Sale will hope Boston's bats are improved by the time he makes his next start Tuesday at home against the Orioles.
6:19 am (EST)
Edubray Ramos Headshot

Ramos (elbow) said he felt fine when talking with reporters after Thursday's game, Ben Harris of MLB.com reports.

Ramos left Thursday's game after taking a line drive off his right elbow. If there is swelling, he may get an extra day or two of rest before he is used in a game.
5:48 am (EST)
Pat Neshek Headshot

Neshek picked up his fourth hold of the season Thursday with a scoreless two-thirds of an inning against the Marlins. He allowed one hit and struck out one.

Neshek has yet to allow a run this season and he has given up just five hits with a 6:2 K:BB in 7.2 innings. He is unlikely to enter the mix for saves given the Phillies' other options, but he should continue to be a decent source of holds this season.
5:40 am (EST)
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins Headshot

Nugent-Hopkins had an assist, two shots and a hit in Edmonton's Game 1 win over Anaheim on Wednesday.

That assist is Nugent-Hopkins's first point of the postseason. Though he hasn't shown up on the scoresheet often, he's seeing plenty of ice time and is skating on the team's second power play unit. He's played well but has largely been deployed in a defensive role. He's been better than the stats show, but his upside is limited by his usage.
3:15 am (EST)
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