A couple of observations that are not mutually-exclusive:
- Yasiel Puig looks a lot leaner this year and, in the first three games of his I’ve watched, his bat looks faster; and
- Jered Weaver couldn’t throw a baseball through wet cardboard.
Those two things taken together have led to Puig hitting two two-run homers in the first four innings of their afternoon tilt with the San Diego Padres.
The first one came in the bottom of the second with Puig first-pitch swinging on an 85 m.p.h. fastball. That went way the heck out to left field. The second came in the bottom of the fourth on a 2-0 breaking ball that hung like wash on a line, registering 78 m.p.h. on the gun. Puig shot that one out to left as well.
I’m not gonna say too mashed taters off of Jered Weaver means Puig is back to 2013 form, but he hit a homer last night too and is 5-for-11 with two walks so far. And, like I said, the bat looks quick and his body looks lean.
If he is back to top form, the Dodgers are gonna be amazingly hard to beat in the NL West.
The Diamondbacks announced on Monday that starter Shelby Miller has been placed on the 10-day disabled list with right elbow inflammation. Miller will get a second opinion on his elbow on Tuesday, per MLB.com’s Steve Gilbert. Pitcher Silvino Bracho has been called up from Triple-A Reno to take Miller’s spot on the roster.
Miller, 26, left Sunday’s start with what was described at the time as forearm tightness. Through his first four starts, Miller is carrying a 4.09 ERA with a 20/12 K/BB ratio in 22 innings.
Bracho, 24, has pitched quite well in 6 2/3 innings of relief at Reno. He’s given up just one unearned run on four hits and a walk (intentional) with 12 strikeouts.
Archie Bradley figures to take Miller’s spot in the starting rotation as Bracho will work middle relief.
And John Lackey is livid.
The Brewers’ first baseman homered in each of his first two plate appearances against Reds starter Amir Garrett on Monday evening, helping his team to a 6-1 lead after two frames. The first was a solo blast in the first inning, and the second was a two-run shot to the opposite field in the second inning.
According to MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy, Thames has tied the Brewers’ record for home runs in April with 10. Carlos Lee also hit 10 homers in April 2006.
Seven of Thames’ 10 home runs have come against the Reds. Including his first two at-bats on Monday night, Thames is hitting .379/.474/.924 with 17 RBI along with the 10 dingers. Not too shabby from a guy the Brewers signed to a three-year, $16 million contract during the offseason.
Lackey and Cubs pitching coach Chris Bosio both recently implied Thames is using performance-enhancing drugs, but Thames was tested immediately after last Monday’s game against the Cubs.