Ryan Braun after leaving Friday’s game early:
“The only way to get healthy is to take time off and it’s not something I’m really interested in doing.”
Well, someone is making him get cool with the idea, because he sat out last night and will likely be out of the lineup again today. Here’s his manager, Ron Roenicke redefining what Braun’s interests are:
“We need to get this thing taken care of so we can get back to worrying about what’s going on out on the field and who we have playing, not who we don’t have playing,” said Roenicke.
Braun is hitting .310/.394/.603 this season. The Brewers need that production badly. But they him for the bulk of the year, in full, not for a few games now at half-speed. Best to rest him and, if he’s not better in a day or two, DL him.
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.