Yoenis Cespedes is eligible to come off the disabled list today, but the A’s center fielder isn’t ready to return from a strained muscle in his left hand.
Cespedes was cleared for baseball activities last week and has said his hand feels better, but Jane Lee of MLB.com reports that he hasn’t been able to swing a bat yet and until that happens without any problems there can’t be a timetable for rejoining the lineup.
Prior to the injury Cespedes dropped jaws with his monstrous power and hit .245 with five homers, four steals, and a .753 OPS in 28 games, which qualifies as excellent production for an Oakland team that ranks dead last in batting average, slugging percentage, OPS, and runs scored.
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.