2017 NFL Divisional Draft Needs – AFC West Cover Image
2017 NFL Divisional Draft Needs – AFC West
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Steve Pimental
Stack the Deck: April 24 Cover Image
Kenley Jansen Headshot

Jansen worked around two hits with two strikeouts over 1.1 scoreless innings in Tuesday's win over the Giants for his fifth save of the season.

Jansen was brought on with two outs in the eighth inning of a one-run game and allowed a pair of singles before finishing out the frame. He came back with a one-two-three ninth inning to close out the win, earning his fourth save in the last four appearances. Jansen has been used for four-out saves in each of his last three and has completed each with aplomb -- as is often the case for one of baseball's truly elite closers.
9:41 am (EST)
Clayton Kershaw Headshot

Kershaw (4-1) tossed seven innings of one-run ball in Tuesday's win over the Giants, allowing one run on six hits and one walk with seven strikeouts.

The home team got to Kershaw for a run on three hits in the third inning, but he allowed multiple batters to reach just once during the rest of his outing en route to another win. He has made it past the seventh inning just once this season and was pulled after 90 pitches in this one, indicating that the club may be hesitant to fully unleash him after injury issues last season. That is nitpicking when you consider that Kershaw carries a 2.29 ERA, 0.79 WHIP and a 9.9 K/8 through 35.1 innings. He will look to continue what has been a typically strong start Sunday against the Phillies.
9:32 am (EST)
Mikie Mahtook Headshot

Mahtook hit his first home run of the season in his lone at-bat of Tuesday's 19-9 win over the Mariners.

Mahtook came on for Justin Upton in left field in the top of the eighth inning, then blasted a two-run home run off Evan Scribner in the bottom of the inning. Mahtook has some pop, but he's also a career .229 hitter who's not getting regular playing time at the moment. He could play even less when J.D. Martinez returns.
9:28 am (EST)
Marshawn Lynch Headshot

The Seahawks have reached an agreement to trade Lynch to the Raiders, pending the running back's passing of a physical Wednesday, ESPN's Adam Schefter reports. In return, the Seahawks will receive the right to swap late-round picks with the Raiders in 2018, according to Mike Garafolo of NFL Network.

Lynch sat out the 2016 season and announced his retirement from the NFL, but the 31-year-old couldn't turn down the allure of playing for his hometown team. According to Schefter, Lynch will sign a two-year deal with the Raiders once the team officially acquires his rights from the Seahawks. Lynch projects to serve as the Raiders' starting running back following the offseason departure of Latavius Murray, and the team is hoping a year away from the game has helped rejuvenate him. The five-time Pro Bowler showed diminished effectiveness while fighting through injuries in his last season in 2015, playing seven games and averaging 3.8 yards per carry.
9:26 am (EST)
J.C. Ramírez Headshot

Ramirez completed seven scoreless innings in Tuesday's no-decision versus the Athletics, allowing two hits and two walks with seven strikeouts.

Ramirez turned in a gem after two consecutive rough starts, setting a seasonal best for innings completed and pitches thrown. His strikeout stuff was working for the second straight outing, perhaps due in part to his outstanding velocity, as his fastball sat around 97 mph through the opening stages of the game. Ramirez has gone deeper into the game and with better results through each of his first three starts, helping turn around an inauspicious beginning to the season, and he will carry a respectable 4.43 ERA along with a 1.16 WHIP into Sunday's road start against the Rangers.
9:25 am (EST)
Addison Russell Headshot

Russell went 1-for-3 and scored the only run of the game in a 1-0 win over the Pirates on Tuesday.

On a day in which Gerrit Cole and two Pittsburgh relievers limited the Cubs to just two hits, Russell's second-inning double was the highlight for Chicago's offense. He came around to score on a throwing error. Russell is now slashing .291/.341/.468, all of which are ahead of his rates from 2016.
9:20 am (EST)
Héctor Rondón Headshot

Rondon recorded his third hold of the season in Tuesday's win over the Pirates. He pitched a scoreless inning, allowing one walk and striking out one.

After Kyle Hendricks cruised through six scoreless innings and Koji Uehara shut down the Pirates in the seventh, Rondon took care of the eighth inning. He's been outstanding so far this season, posting a 1.08 ERA, 0.84 WHIP and 11 strikeouts through 8.1 innings. He's behind Wade Davis in the Cubs' bullpen, but Rondon should be a good source of holds, ratios and strikeouts moving forward.
9:16 am (EST)
Mychal Givens Headshot

Givens is 3-0 while sporting a 0.84 ERA and 0.94 WHIP through eight relief appearances this season.

The O's second-round pick in 2009 has proved in his two previous MLB seasons that he has big-league stuff. Over 96 career appearances at the top level, Givens owns a 2.58 ERA, 1.15 WHIP while notching 144 strikeouts over 115.1 innings. The big right-hander has all the makings of a future closer, but with Zach Britton (forearm) occupying that role in Baltimore -- and Brad Brach in his stead -- Givens won't have a ninth-inning job anytime soon.
9:16 am (EST)
Koji Uehara Headshot

Uehara recorded his second hold of the season in Tuesday's win over the Pirates. He pitched a scoreless inning, allowing one hit and striking out one.

Uehara came on for Kyle Hendricks after he pitched six scoreless innings, and the veteran reliever kept the Pirates at bay. Other than a rough outing on April 16, when he allowed two earned runs without recording an out, Uehara has not been scored upon, and he carries a nifty 2.08 ERA.
9:12 am (EST)
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