2014 Futures Game rosters announced

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The 2014 Futures Game will, for the 16th year, pit some of the game’s top prospects against one another in a “United States vs. The World” format. Major League Baseball just announced the rosters.

Here’s the United States team:

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Here’s The World:

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We’re not the biggest prospect hounds around here, but there are certainly some recognizable names. Mookie Betts. Noah Syndergaard. Joey Gallo. Christian Bethancourt. Francisco Lindor. Major League Baseball’s press release highlighted the U.S. team’s Kris Bryant, who was the second overall selection of the 2013 Draft, and the World Team’s Javier Baez, who was the ninth overall pick of the 2011 Draft. Both of them play in the Cubs’ organization, so viva Chicago. I’m sure, however, you will recognize some of your favorite team’s promising young gentlemen.

There are 15 former first round draft picks, six players picked in Compensation Round and five second round picks. For the World Team, the Dominican Republic is represented by nine players, followed by Puerto Rico with seven, Venezuela with three and Colombia with two.  Canada, Cuba, Mexico and Panama each have one player on the World Team. The seven for Puerto Rico are the most they’ve had in over a decade, which I’m sure Major League Baseball will publicize given their recent efforts and trying to build the talent pipeline from Puerto Rico.

The game is at 5pm on the Sunday before the All-Star Game.

 

2017 Preview: The American League East

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For the past few weeks we’ve been previewing the 2017 season. Here, in handy one-stop-shopping form, is our package of previews from the American League East

Boston may have the most talent and, in Mookie Betts, the best player. The Yankees have the best farm system. Baltimore has all the dingers and the best closer. Toronto may have the best collection of heels, at least in the view of fans of the other AL East teams.  The Rays have the best . . . hmm. I’ll get back to you on that.

Anyway, here are our previews for the American League East:

Boston Red Sox
Toronto Blue Jays
Baltimore Orioles
New York Yankees
Tampa Bay Rays

Steven Matz likely to start season on DL; Zack Wheeler to adhere to innings limit

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Mets manager Terry Collins said on Wednesday, “It’s unlikely that [Steven Matz] will start the season with us.” The final spot in the Mets’ starting rotation will go to either Zack Wheeler or Seth Lugo, Newsday’s Marc Carig reports.

On Wheeler’s innings limit, assistant GM John Ricco said, “There’s going to be some number but we don’t exactly know what that is.” Wheeler missed the last two seasons after undergoing Tommy John surgery.

Neither Wheeler nor Lugo have had terrific springs as each carries a 5.11 and 5.56 Grapefruit League ERA, respectively. However, Carig notes that Wheeler has impressed simply by appearing healthy and brandishing a fastball that once again sits in the mid- to high-90’s. Lugo, meanwhile, proved crucial to the Mets last year, posting a 2.67 ERA across eight starts and nine relief appearances.