Mountcastle went 1-for-4 with a two-run home run Thursday against the Red Sox. Mountcastle got the O's going early, slugging his long ball in the bottom of the first inning. It was his first homer of the season and first extra-base hit since Opening Day. Though he's already racked up three runs scored and five RBI, Mountcastle is also hitting just .179 and will have to improve upon his 36.7 percent strikeout rate to return significant fantasy value.
Mountcastle went 1-for-4 with a two-run double in Friday's 3-0 win over the Red Sox. The 24-year-old broke open a scoreless tie in the sixth inning by turning on a Matt Andriese pitch and rattling it off the Green Monster. Mountcastle had an impressive 35-game debut in 2020 and hit cleanup for the O's in their opener Friday, positioning him for a big first full season in the majors.
Mountcastle was scratched from Wednesday's Grapefruit League lineup with a "non-physical" injury, but manager Brandon Hyde hopes the outfielder will play Thursday, Nathan Ruiz of The Baltimore Sun reports. Hyde indicated he can't disclose the specifics of the injury, so it's unclear what the 24-year-old is dealing with. Regardless, it appears to be a minor issue, so it's unlikely to affect Mountcastle's status for the start of the season.
The Orioles scratched Mountcastle from the lineup ahead of Wednesday's Grapefruit League game against the Red Sox, Steve Melewski of MASNSports.com reports. Baltimore has yet to provide an explanation behind Mountcastle's removal, but it's possible that he's just getting some extra rest. Tyler Nevin was added to the starting nine as a replacement in left field for Mountcastle.
Mountcastle has just two hits in his first 19 spring at-bats. Mountcastle should still have an everyday role in Baltimore this season regardless of his spring performance, though the Orioles would certainly like for him to find his timing sometime soon. He broke out to hit .333/.386/.492 in his 35-game debut last year, but a .398 BABIP clearly inflated those numbers. Given the Orioles' lack of established options, Mountcastle should still be in the lineup on a regular basis this season even if he goes through a sophomore slump, likely splitting time between first base, left field and designated hitter.
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