Ray’s Ramblings: Spring Flings
Vogelbach demoted. Iglesias hurt. Votto batting third. Cubs make rotation decision. Kang not worth even a moderate look.
MARINERS MAKE ROSTER MOVE
It seemed likely that Dan Vogelbach would be on the good side, facing righties, of a platoon at first base with the Mariners sharing time with Danny Valencia. Whoops. Instead, Vogelbach will begin the year in the minors as he was sent to Triple-A on Thursday. Vogelbach didn’t look good the past 10 days, and ultimately that is why he was sent down (he had 19 strikeouts in 57 at-bats this spring with a .646 OPS). First base now belongs to Valencia, he of the .615 OPS in 16 games this spring, with Taylor Motter serving as the backup. Not a split mind you at first, but Valencia playing daily. Valencia only appeared in 18 games at first last season but he already qualifies at third base (68 games) and the outfield (38 games). He is an excellent AL-only target and has to be considered a solid bench add in mixed leagues at this point after averaging a line of .289-18-58-66 over just 408 at-bats the last two seasons.
IGLESIAS HURT, BUT OK
Raisel Iglesias had tests run on his hip and elbow and they all came back clean. Turns out he fell in the shower three weeks ago causing the bumps and bruises. “I was taking a shower and did a bad move and tried hold with my left, but I couldn’t get anything with my right on the opposite. I couldn’t get anything. It happens. It’s a small shower there.” It’s unclear if Iglesias will be ready for Opening Day or not though it shouldn’t be much longer if than that. It’s still unclear who will close for the Reds this season though I do project Iglesias to be the best option at the moment.
VOTTO NOT BATTING LEADOFF
The Reds considered batting Joey Votto leadoff, but ultimately they’ve decided to hit him third this season. It sounds like he will hit behind Billy Hamilton and Jose Peraza. “Hitting second behind Billy kind of requires that you give him an opportunity to run a little bit,” Price said. “There does need to be some patience in that two-spot when Billy’s on base. Both Zack and Jose, they’re free-swingers. They get a good pitch to hit on that first pitch and they don’t like to wait around. It’ll be a work in progress.”
Votto and Peraza are fine, though the wisdom of hitting Hamilton first is much less clear.
CUBS MAKE ROTAITON DECISION
Here is how the Cubs rotation will look on Opening Day: Jon Lester, Jake Arrieta, John Lackey, Brett Anderson and Kyle Hendricks. That means that Anderson was chose for the rotation over Mike Montgomery. Anderson stinks. He threw 180.1 innings in 2015 but that’s the only time he’s thrown 100-innings since 2010. He’s going to get hurt, and at some point Montgomery will be making starts.
As for the rotation order, here’s what manager Joe Maddon had to say. "Everybody's always concerned about pecking order regarding who you perceive to be best or least best," Maddon said. "It's just more or less balancing it out. I don't even know how important that is either. Some teams only have righties -- you see righty, righty. Is that a benefit to the other side? I don't know. We're just going to do that to break it up a little bit."
This is yet another example of why worrying about the pecking order in a rotation is pointless. I wrote about this in Do Rotation Spots Matter?
PLAYER PROFILES RECENTLY ADDED...
YOU SHOULDN’T CARE ABOUT KANG
Jung Ho Kang will not be ready for Opening Day. “We’re to a point in time where it’s unrealistic to think Jung Ho’s going to be ready for opening day,” GM Neal Huntington said. “We remain optimistic we’re going to get him here hopefully sooner than later. Now the challenge is if we don’t, if it takes some time, we’ve built this club and feel good about the guys we have here.”
You shouldn’t care about him anyway.
Arrested for a DUI, Kang wrecked his car, fled the scene, and blamed the accident on his passenger. It was all lies and Kang was convicted and given an eight month sentence in jail that was suspended for two years. Not a good guy, this was Kang’s THIRD DUI arrest in South Korea since 2009. Kang has also been investigated for sexual assault.
He doesn’t deserve a spot on your roster.
If you haven’t seen it yet, check out Logan. Great flick.
Ray Flowers can be heard Monday/Tuesday and Thursday/Friday, 7 PM EDT, Wednesday 8 PM EDT on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio (Sirius 210, XM 87). You can also hear Ray Sunday nights at 9 PM EDT PM on the channel talking fantasy sports. Follow Ray’s work at Fantasy Alarm and on Twitter (@baseballguys).