Notes — Milton Bradley’s home run in the third inning landed just in front of me. I was surprised to see Matt Murton batting clean up for the Rockies.
14. Kansas city Royals – A monumental step forward for the Royals, but it has to hurt seeing Wil Myers and Chris Archer having so much success with Tampa Bay.
The sale jerseys can survive with a platoon of Brian Anderson and Dewayne Wise in center (with Anderson getting more playing time thanks to gold glove-caliber defense), but the lack of a “traditional” leadoff hitter will force Ozzie Guillen to get creative. In the end, I’d expect Chris Getz to get the majority of at-bats from the No. 1 spot in the order this year, but he may not slide in there until late April or early May, whenever Guillen realizes that he’s a better long-term option than Wise or Anderson.
After a stellar 2009 season, Michael Wuertz began the year injured and rarely flashed his previous form. Finishing the year with a 4.31 ERA, Wuertz was often very inconsistent — resulting in a lot of anxious moments. Wuertz still had the ability to strikeout hitters regularly, but his walks were way up.
Two encouraging offensive showings immediately carried over to Monday’s game. Gordon Beckham got going early with a two-run line drive homer, his third of the season, to left in the second inning off Angels starter Ervin Santana. Carlos Quentin continued the barrage with his second double of the night and fifteenth of the season in the fifth. This one would score Alexei Ramirez and make the score 4-0. Manager Mike Scioscia left Santana in for one too many batters as Ramirez would strike again planting one in the seats on a first pitch fastball making the score 5-0 in the seventh. The Angels call to the pen would only benefit the Sox as Quentin hit a three-run homer to dead center on a hanging breaker making the score 8-0, which is where it would stay.
The American League has seen the likes of Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee relocate to the national League. So Lester’s only competition should be Felix Hernandez and CC Sabathia. Hernandez will be hard-pressed to win 13 games again like he did last year despite a 2.27 ERA. Seattle’s offense and bullpen is just that bad. The Yankees’ Sabathia, despite still being only 30 years old, has logged over 230 innings in his last four seasons and has, remarkably, thrown over 180 innings in each of his 10 seasons in the majors. Might this be the year he breaks down? The Yankees don’t even want to consider the possibility.
They were an impressive two innings of work for Sale. With little to look forward to, he represented the city well. At the break, Sale is fifth in the American League in ERA and Strike outs. On the flip side is record is just 6-8 on the season. That is the result of little run support and a bad team supporting him.