Happy Cinco de Mayo everybody, and I hope you bought low on Kyle Hendricks while you could! He had his best start of the season on Tuesday, limiting the Dodgers of all teams to just one run over seven innings. Hendricks was hardly the superstar of Tuesday, however, as Dylan Cease stole the show. He's now been phenomenal over his last two starts. Michael Kopech who? You can read more about Cease below.
As awful and concerning the injuries to Luis Robert and Christian Yelich are, there has been no shortage of outfielders to add off the waiver wire. Willie Calhoun and Tyler O'Neill are two of the hotter names that might be available right now. With Calhoun you're likely getting a plus batting average with decent pop, and with O'Neill you'll get a lower batting average with plus power and a little speed. Figure out what you need more and go get one! If you're in a deeper league, look for Josh Rojas or Mike Tauchman.
Yelich injury sounds concerning
Brewers OF Christian Yelich was placed on the IL on Tuesday for the second stint this season. Brewers manager Craig Counsell sounds concerned, too, and he had the following to say on Tuesday: "Last night [Christian] told us that he's not going to be able to do this on a daily basis. And so we need to stop and completely resolve this. ... At this point, we don't have an answer."
Yelich's struggles date back to last season and he's striking out more than he ever has in his career. Could the dip in production be attributed to playing through an injury?
Scott's Worryometer is a solid 5 (out of 10). The back issues are something that has been constant for Yelich even dating back to his MVP season. There's not much you can do with Yelich, however. You can't sell him right now at his value. Scott would be more likely to buy than sell him at this point, but it would need to be at a discount.
More news and notes
- Mets SP Jacob deGrom was scratched from his start Tuesday and the MRI showed inflammation in his right lat. He will refrain from throwing for the next few days. Scott's Worryometer reads a 3 (out of 10). There's always the potential he aggravates it and it becomes worse, but it also seems like we have an episode like this with deGrom every year and it's typically nothing. This was enough for Scott to drop him back to SP3, however.
- Mets SP Carlos Carrasco pitched in a simulated game at the Mets spring facility Tuesday. He apparently hit 96 mph with his fastball. He's expected to make a rehab start Sunday but might only need one of those before making his next start after it with the Mets.
- Nationals SP Juan Soto was activated Tuesday but was limited to a bench role. He pinch hit and went 0 for 1 with a strikeout.
- Cubs 2B Nico Hoerner was placed on the IL with a left forearm strain and SP Jake Arrieta was placed on the IL with a right thumb injury. It's expected to be a minimum stay for Hoerner.
- Reds OF Nick Senzel was out of the Reds lineup with a sore shoulder. He left Opening Day with a shoulder injury as well. You know what that means -- it's Tyler Naquin time again.
- Giants SP Kevin Gausman was placed on the COVID IL with vaccine side effects. He should be back in a few days.
- Twins OF Alex Kirilloff, who has been on a tear recently, was scratched Tuesday with wrist soreness.
- Padres SP Dinelson Lamet returned from the IL Tuesday against the Pirates. He pitched two innings and allowed four hits with zero strikeouts. His fastball was down 3 mph from last year, his slider down 2 mph. It's tough to get a read on what the Padres are doing here with Lamet.
- Reds RP Amir Garrett has been suspended seven games for causing a benches-clearing brawl. He's appealing the suspension.
- Royals SP Brady Singer is on track to start Wednesday against Cleveland. He got hit on his heel with a line drive his last time out.
- Cardinals RP Jordan Hicks was placed on the IL with elbow inflammation. He's expected to miss at least four weeks.
- Twins INF Luis Arraez was placed on the 7-day concussion IL, with Nick Gordon recalled in a corresponding move.
- Marlins SP Elieser Hernandez completed a 30-pitch bullpen session Tuesday. He's currently on the IL with a biceps injury.
- Diamondbacks RP Merrill Kelly was placed on the IL for unspecified reasons, with Joakim Soria recalled.
- On Monday, the Blue Jays said OF George Springer would be back Tuesday. Narrator: Springer was not back Tuesday.
- Angels 3B Anthony Rendon was out of the Angels lineup after fouling a ball off his leg late Monday night.
- Tigers SP Matthew Boyd will start Sunday against the Twins if his sore left knee continues to make progress.
- The Dodgers are likely to treat one of their weekend games against the Angels as a bullpen day, meaning SP Trevor Bauer is unlikely to make a start Saturday on short rest.
- As expected, Giants INF Tommy La Stella was placed on the IL with a left hamstring strain. He'll be out at least four weeks.
- Yankees 1B Luke Voit started a rehab assignment Tuesday. He finished with two hits for Scranton-Wilkes Barre.
- Austin Martin, the Blue Jays' first-round pick in 2020, is likely to split his playing time in the minors between shortstop and center field. He went 2 for 4 with a walk in his first game.
- Blue Jays SP Nate Pearson started Opening Day for Triple-A Buffalo on Tuesday. He'll need to show he can work at least six innings consistently before he's considered for a promotion. He finished the game with eight strikeouts and just one walk over 3.2 innings. He's got a long way to go but also has the upside to potentially help win your league down the stretch run.
- Angels OF Jo Adell is starting his minor league season at Triple-A.
- Mariners pitching prospect Logan Gilbert will start Friday for their Triple-A affiliate. Gilbert is a personal favorite of mine.
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Cease continues to shine
White Sox SP Dylan Cease was amazing for a second straight outing. Cease struck out 11 Reds batters over six shutout innings. The numbers under the hood backed up Cease's strong box score stats as he induced 17 swinging strikes. Here are the numbers from his last two starts: 13 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 3 BB, 20 K on the back of a 21% swinging strike rate.
As Scott noted, the spin rate on his fastball was way up in Cease's previous shutout start, and it was way up again in this start. This is the big takeaway here. He's getting a lot of action on these pitches, and that's what the new pitching coach has been working on with both Cease and Carlos Rodon. It appears that something has clicked for Cease and he now looks like the dominant power pitcher he was always billed to be.
Cease has all the arm talent in the world and it looks like he's figuring out how to be a pitcher with a four-pitch mix. This is no longer the two-pitch mix Cease of the past. He's 63% rostered with a two-star week coming up. He is the definition of a must-add player and Scott told a listener on Twitter the answer was "yes" to whether or not he should drop Zach Plesac for Cease.
I'm personally eyeing the 50-55 range in my SP rankings for the perfect spot to drop Cease into my next update. Scott is putting him ahead of Chris Paddack, Frankie Montas and Danny Duffy -- just outside his top 50 SPs.
To stream or not to stream
The three SPs in bold are our top-three picks if you're in need of a streamer.
- Rockies SP Jon Gray vs. SF
- Diamondbacks SP Luke Weaver at MIA
- Red Sox SP Martin Perez vs. DET
- Royals SP Brady Singer vs. CLE
- Astros SP Luis Garcia at NYY
- Blue Jays SP Robbie Ray at OAK