The Padres announced late this afternoon that second baseman Jedd Gyorko was placed on the paternity leave list. According to Dennis Lin of UT-San Diego, Gyorko’s wife, Karley, is due to give birth to twin boys.
Gyorko is permitted to be away from the team from 24-72 hours. The expectation is that he will return when the Padres begin a three-game series against the Diamondbacks at home this Friday.
This has already been a big month for Gyorko, as he agreed to a five-year, $35 million extension with the Padres just two weeks ago. The 25-year-old is off to a slow start at the plate this season, slashing .144/218/.211 with one home run and nine RBI over 26 games.
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.