Chris Davis hit well in limited action with Texas earlier this season, but the Rangers don’t seem particularly interested in giving him another extended opportunity. So instead he’s destroying Triple-A pitching.
Davis has hit .374 with 19 homers and 52 RBIs in 33 games at Triple-A. Admittedly the Pacific Coast League is very hitter-friendly and that monstrous production comes with Davis’ usual lack of strike-zone control in the form of a 41/9 K/BB ratio, but his OPS is a ridiculous 1.300.
Including his previous Triple-A stints Davis has now hit .335 with a 1.000 OPS in 211 games there, so at this point it seems pretty obvious that the 25-year-old has nothing left to prove in the minors. Unfortunately in the majors he’s hit just .231 with a .701 OPS in 179 games since his strong half-season debut in 2008, striking out 208 times in 612 trips to the plate.
Davis explained during spring training that he’d rather be traded than head back to Triple-A and the Rangers didn’t oblige then, but whether they call him up or start shopping him around it’ll be tough to simply keep him stashed in the minors for much longer.
Yankees first baseman Greg Bird gave his team tons of confidence to hand him the everyday job at first base to start the 2017 regular season, batting .451/.556/1.098 with eight home runs in 51 spring at-bats. But he’s followed that up by hitting .107/.254/.214 through the first month of the regular season.
GM Brian Cashman doesn’t have any intent to demote Bird back to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch reports. Cashman said, “It’s not even an option for me in my mind right now, at all.”
Bird didn’t start Sunday’s game against the Orioles, a 7-4 loss in 11 innings. Lefty Wade Miley started for the Orioles, prompting manager Joe Girardi to put Chris Carter into the lineup at first base. If Bird isn’t able to figure things out, Carter might have an increased role on the team.
Rays starter Chris Archer threw his first pitch to Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista behind the slugger’s back with one out in the first inning of Sunday afternoon’s game in Toronto. Bautista and Archer then had a staredown. Home plate umpire Jim Wolf issued warnings to both teams. Bautista ultimately flied out to right field and he appeared to have a quick word with Archer on his way back to the dugout.
Archer could have been exacting revenge — euphemistically known as “protecting his teammate” — because Jays reliever Joe Biagini hit Rays outfielder Steven Souza in the seventh inning of Saturday’s game. Souza was forced to leave the game and underwent an X-ray, which came back negative. He was held out of Sunday’s lineup. Biagini’s pitch did not appear to be intentional.
The Jays won Sunday’s contest 3-1 with no further incident. The two clubs meet again in Tampa for a three-game series starting on May 5, so we’ll see if Sunday was the last of the bad blood between them.