With the Orioles up 5-1 in the bottom of the second this afternoon, the Rays were attempting to mount an early comeback. Evan Longoria had doubled and Desmond Jennings drove him in with a single for the Rays’ first run. Trying to put himself in scoring position, Jennings attempted to steal second base with Ryan Roberts at the plate. Orioles catcher Matt Wieters fired to second base, but the throw was to the wrong side of the bag. Never fazed, second baseman Alexi Casilla snagged the throw and whipped his arm behind his back and tagged Jennings on the foot before he could reach the bag, getting a crucial early out.
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.
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.
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.