Grant Brisbee of SBN goes after the “Edgar Martinez is not a Hall of Famer” crowd by reminding people that, yo, the DH has been part of the game for 38 years now, so they have to be Hall of Fame eligible. Brisbee’s hypotheticals which illuminate the silliness of the notion that DHs should not be in Cooperstown are worth a look. Particularly the one which holds that Mariano Rivera shouldn’t make it because, hey, he couldn’t hack it as a starter.
My guess is that the response to this by an anti-Martinez voter would be “hey, DHs should be eligible, but they gotta be WAY better than any other hitters.” To them I’d ask what such a hitter would look like. Because Martinez was a friggin’ beast.
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.
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.