The Elusive Citizens Bank Park Dumpster Hippie

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One of the better developments of the early season has been the return of The Fightins. It’s a great Phillies blog that had gone on hiatus for a while.  I missed them because they are one of the few Phillies voices out there that doesn’t obsess about how the world views Philly. Rather, they actually, you know, seem to have a lot of fun watching a great baseball team and don’t cry if someone disrespects the blog’s namesake. What a concept.

Oh, and then they do stuff like unleash The Elusive Citizens Bank Park Dumpster Hippie.  Which is pretty much what it sounds like. And be sure to read the second comment.

In other news, the Braves head to Philly for a big series this weekend. If Atlanta is going to at least try to make a race of it it’s pretty important that they do well.  If you’re looking for a nice preview of it, you can start at Crashburn Alley, who talks to Braves blogger Peter Hjort about the series.

My personal view: life is always better when the Bravos miss Roy Halladay.  Life is always worse when they face Cole Hamels. It’s not like there are a lot of good options in matching up, however.  That said, I like the way Atlanta is playing right now a hell of a lot better than they were the last time these two met.

Video: Jake Arrieta hits a 465-foot home run off of Zack Greinke

Jamie Squire/Getty Images
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Jake Arrieta‘s bat is in midseason form already. The Cubs’ ace swatted a solo home run to center field off of Zack Greinke in Thursday afternoon’s Grapefruit League exhibition game, his first homer of the spring.

The blast went 465 feet, according to MLB.com’s Daren Willman.

Arrieta has hit two home runs in each of the past two seasons. Madison Bumgarner (eight) and Noah Syndergaard (four) are the only other pitchers to match or exceed his output in that department.

Greinke, meanwhile, is hoping to bounce back after a miserable 2016 season. He finished with an uncharacteristic 4.37 ERA in 26 starts in his first year with the Diamondbacks.

Luis Valbuena to miss four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring

Kent Horner/Getty Images
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Angels first baseman Luis Valbuena will miss the next four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.

Valbuena, 31, signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Angels in January and was on track to get the lion’s share of the playing time at first base. While he’s out, however, C.J. Cron will handle first base on a regular basis. When Valbeuna returns, the two will likely form a platoon.

Last year with the Astros, Valbuena hit a solid .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances.