And he’s into the idea:
“They’ve asked me if I think I could play shortstop,” Pedroia says.
“They’ve put it out there and I’ve told them I’m all for it. I can do
it. I can’t wait for Tito [Terry Francona] to call me and ask, ‘Can you
do it?’ I can do it. I really want to do it.”
Pedroia was a shortstop at Arizona State and played a bit of short in the minors, but he was bumped off the position by Hanley Ramirez in the Sox system — himself no great defensive shakes — and has only played six games at short in the majors. Moving to the left on the defensive spectrum is a tough nut to crack, and the odds don’t favor success.
But it’s worth a try, right? I mean, it’s way easier to find a decent second baseman out on the market than a shortstop.
(Thanks to Jason at IIATMS for the heads up.)
Manager Bud Black has tabbed Jon Gray to start on Opening Day for the Rockies. That will be Monday, April 3 in Milwaukee against the Brewers in an afternoon contest.
Gray, 25, is starting Opening Day for the first time in his career. He’ll be the sixth different Rockies pitcher to start Opening Day in as many years.
The Rockies and Gray had a bit of a scare on Friday as he left his spring training start with discomfort in his left foot, but everything came up clean in an MRI. He pitched again on Wednesday with no issue.
Last season, Gray went 10-10 with a 4.61 ERA and a 185/59 K/BB ratio in 168 innings. A consensus top prospect entering each of the previous three seasons, Gray surprisingly put up better numbers at Coors Field — the most hitter-friendly park in baseball — than away.
Today Washington Nationals manager Dusty Baker named Blake Treinen as his closer. Treinen has saved exactly one big league game.
There wasn’t necessarily an obvious choice, however. Last year Washington had Mark Melancon, but with him gone and GM Mike Rizzo’s failure to land a high-profile closer in the offseason, it became a contest between Treinen Shawn Kelley and Koda Glover.
Treinen posted a 2.28 ERA with 31 walks and 63 Ks in 67 innings in 2016. His big improvement last year came against lefties, who had tattooed him in the past. He pitched well this spring as well, but that doesn’t necessarily mean anything.
The Nats are our favorites to win the NL East, but we do have some questions about the pen. Blake Treinen will take the first crack at answering them.