Texas Rangers starting pitcher Justin Grimm has been voted American League Rookie of the Month for April. This marks the second consecutive April that a Ranger has garnered top rookie honors after teammate Yu Darvish won in April 2012. Grimm compiled a 2-0 record with a 1.59 ERA, 15 strikeouts and four walks in 17.0 innings over three starts. Justin was tied for first among A.L. rookie hurlers in wins and was fourth in innings pitched. Opponents batted just .239 against him.
Atlanta Braves catcher Evan Gattis has been voted the National League Rookie of the Month for the month of April. In 21 April contests, Gattis led Major League rookies with six home runs, 16 RBI, a .566 slugging percentage and 43 total bases while hitting .250 (19-for-76). The 26-year-old, who was selected by the Braves in the 23rd round of the 2010 First-Year Player Draft, ranked third among qualifying N.L. rookies in hitting, was tied for second with nine runs scored and was fourth in hits. Gattis led all rookies with a club-high five game-winning RBI in his first month in the Majors
And neither of them woulda likely seen the light of day if it weren’t for injuries. So, thanks Matt Harrison and Brian McCann!
Jeff Passan of Yahoo has an interesting report today. MLB and Rawlings are developing a new baseball. It will have a tacky surface on the leather, allowing pitchers to get a better grip without having to resort to sunscreen and rosin and pine tar and stuff. Substances which, in theory, are for grip but which are really used by pitchers to doctor the ball, with MLB and opposing hitters mostly looking the other way.
They tested the new balls in the Arizona Fall League last year and Passan talks to a couple of the pitchers who used the ball. More testing would be required, though, so we’re not likely to see the new balls until at least 2018.
As you know, baseball players love change, so I’m sure we won’t hear another thing about the ball and its introduction will go off seamlessly.
Wait. It’ll still have seams. You know what I mean.
The first few days of spring training have been pretty quiet. Guys are going about their business and games are being played, but we haven’t had any news or controversy or silliness or anything fun like that. That’s about to change, however, as Tim Tebow has arrived at Mets camp.
Tebow, a non-roster invite, arrived at the Mets facility in Port St. Lucie, Florida this morning and, unlike every other non-roster invite, had a press conference. You may be surprised to learn that he’s in great shape, is excited to get going and wants to improve steadily each day.
The plan for Tebow is to be a part of the minor league camp, not the major league one, so he’s not going to be as visible at workouts as you might expect. He will be playing in some major league spring training games, however, at least until we get deeper into spring training, after which you’d assume that veterans and players with a real shot of making the big club will play longer.
In the meantime, you can buy Tebow shirts. But not Curtis Granderson ones, it seems: