First Jose Fernandez can’t admire home runs, now Bryce Harper can’t do this anymore:
At least Davey Johnson doesn’t want him doing that any longer. From Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post:
“He expects himself to do well every time up,” Johnson said. “Sometimes, it doesn’t happen that way. He takes it out on something. He needs to quit that.”
This is a different thing that Fernandez, of course, as it’s way less likely Fernandez is going to break his hand or get a bat shard in his eye from being a bit of a hot dog than Harper is from doing this stuff. Harper probably should figure out how to deal with his frustration a bit better.
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.