Maddon to keep giving Bryant work in outfield

Skipper hopes to have all prospects work at more than one position

Maddon to keep giving Bryant work in outfield

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Kris Bryant made his second start in left field on Sunday and manager Joe Maddon wants the Cubs' top prospect to get more time there.

The Cubs are emphasizing versatility among their position players, and trying to get all Minor Leaguers to play at least two positions.

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Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings, and you can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Revere breaks promise with leaping catch to rob Davis

Left fielder steals home run in Sunday's Grapefruit League game

Revere breaks promise with leaping catch to rob Davis

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Tigers center fielder Rajai Davis asked Phillies left fielder Ben Revere for a favor before Sunday afternoon's Grapefruit League game at Bright House Field.

"Take it easy," he said. "I need some hits."

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Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone. Follow him on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

31 times WWE and MLB universes collided

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31 times WWE and MLB universes collided

When I ventured down to Florida for the first annual Cut4 Spring Training Road Trip a-paloozafest Extravaganza earlier this month, I had the pleasure of spending some time in Clearwater -- home to Phillies Spring Training and the Hulk Hogan-themed retail capital of the world.

Continue Reading on Cut4

Janssen getting MRI on right shoulder

Setup man having trouble loosening up, scheduled for test on Monday

Janssen getting MRI on right shoulder

VIERA, Fla. -- After watching his team defeat the Marlins, 11-7, on Sunday afternoon, manager Matt Williams announced that reliever Casey Janssen will have an MRI on his right shoulder on Monday.

Janssen was scheduled to pitch against the Mets this past Saturday, but he had a tough time getting loose, according to the skipper, so he was scratched.

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Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. He can also be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

With Uehara hurting, Mujica could step up as Red Sox closer

Farrell may also opt for bullpen-by-committee

With Uehara hurting, Mujica could step up as Red Sox closer

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Time is running out for closer Koji Uehara to be ready for the start of the season. It now seems likely that Edward Mujica will be the primary closer on Opening Day, with others (Junichi Tazawa, Alexei Ogando, perhaps even Tommy Layne) chipping in when matchups present themselves.

Uehara has been battling a left hamstring strain for the last couple of weeks. Everything had to go just perfectly for the righty to be ready for the start of the season.

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Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Reynolds has inside track on Opening Day start at second

Regular starter Murphy's lingering hamstring strain likely to keep him out

Reynolds has inside track on Opening Day start at second

JUPITER, Fla. -- At the dawn of Spring Training, it seemed near-impossible that Matt Reynolds would make the Mets. Though Reynolds broke out a year ago at Triple-A Las Vegas, the Mets already had their starting middle infield set with Wilmer Flores and Daniel Murphy. Giving Reynolds a bit more seasoning in the desert seemed apt.

But Reynolds' strong spring, combined with Murphy's lingering right hamstring strain, has cast uncertainty over the situation. With each passing day, it appears less and less likely that Murphy will heal in time for Opening Day, meaning the Mets must choose amongst Reynolds, Danny Muno or Ruben Tejada at second base.

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Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Verlander resumes throwing; status uncertain

Right-hander scheduled to make final spring start Thursday vs. Yankees

Verlander resumes throwing; status uncertain

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Justin Verlander resumed throwing Sunday morning, but the Tigers still aren't sure if he'll make his scheduled start Thursday.

Verlander did some "light tossing" at Joker Marchant Stadium, manager Brad Ausmus said. The right-hander still felt some tightness in his arm, but he came through the throwing session feeling OK.

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Adam Berry is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Jim Duquette

5 trades that make sense before Opening Day

5 trades that make sense before Opening Day

It's not often that you see major trades made in the week before Opening Day, which is a shame, because this should be a time when teams should be trying to fill holes that have appeared during Spring Training.

In hopes of spurring some action, here are five trades I'd love to see happen before Opening Day. These are not trades I expect to happen, mind you, but deals that I think make sense for the parties involved.

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Jim Duquette is an analyst for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Top prospect Correa leaves mark with excellent spring

Talented shortstop sent down, feels 'really close' to reaching Majors

Top prospect Correa leaves mark with excellent spring

KISSIMMEE, Fla. -- For the second year in a row, shortstop Carlos Correa made the long walk from the Major League clubhouse to the players' parking lot while carrying his equipment after being reassigned Sunday. It's a sight we might never see again.

Correa, the Astros' top prospect, will finish the spring in Minor League camp in advance of beginning the season at Double-A Corpus Christi, but his performance in front of the Major League staff has only bolstered the belief he's bound for stardom.

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Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Mesoraco relieved after quad cramp diagnosis

All-Star catcher exits after pulling up lame running bases in third inning

Mesoraco relieved after quad cramp diagnosis

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Reds All-Star catcher Devin Mesoraco felt relieved Sunday afternoon after being diagnosed with a left quadriceps cramp. Mesoraco felt his quad tighten running the bases and worried it was serious when he exited the game vs. the Angels in the top of the third inning.

"There's still some good strength in there," Mesoraco said. "It was hot, maybe I didn't drink enough water. I'm not sure."

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Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Headley lends a hand in Eovaldi's shutdown start

Third baseman homers, drives in three to lead Yankees in rout

Headley lends a hand in Eovaldi's shutdown start

KISSIMMEE, Fla. -- Chase Headley went 3-for-4 with a homer and three RBIs to back another strong outing from Nathan Eovaldi to help the Yankees beat the Astros, 7-0, on Sunday afternoon at Osceola County Stadium.

Alex Rodriguez made his debut at first base for the Yankees and went 1-for-1 with a walk and a run scored while playing four innings.

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Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Get an edge in your league with Fantasy 411's Cheat Sheet

Get an edge in your league with Fantasy 411's Cheat Sheet

With fantasy-baseball-draft season in full swing, MLB.com put together a cheat sheet for fans in need of expert advice. Make sure to have the one-stop information shop on hand during your auctions or snake drafts.

For comprehensive coverage of the player pool, check out MLB.com/preview. And follow @Fantasy411 for daily- and annual-league tips all season long.

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Zachary Finkelstein is a fantasy editor for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Teixeira 'fine' after bruising knee in Minors game

Yankees expect first baseman to play Wednesday after getting hit by pitch

Teixeira 'fine' after bruising knee in Minors game

KISSIMMEE, Fla. -- Mark Teixeira was diagnosed with a right knee contusion after being hit by a pitch in a Minor League game on Sunday morning, the Yankees announced.

Teixeira immediately left the game at the Yankees' Himes Avenue complex and appeared to be limping, but he told reporters that he was "fine." The club said Teixeira is receiving ice treatment and that no tests are scheduled.

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Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Orioles stage hit parade to back strong Ubaldo

Parmelee hits late HR as lineup contributes throughout; starter allows one run in 6 IP

Orioles stage hit parade to back strong Ubaldo

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- Right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez tossed six strong innings, while Jimmy Paredes, Dariel Alvarez and Chris Parmelee (three) each had multiple hits in the Orioles' 4-2 victory over the Blue Jays on Sunday afternoon at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium.

Baltimore opened the scoring in the top of the third inning on back-to-back doubles by Everth Cabrera and Paredes. That was the only damage against Blue Jays veteran lefty Mark Buehrle, who scattered seven hits and didn't walk a batter while striking out four over five innings.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Johnson encouraged by results to altered stance

Third baseman hits two home runs in span of four days after adjustments

Johnson encouraged by results to altered stance

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Those who have seen Chris Johnson display his frustrations with a few outbursts in the dugout over the past few years had reason to wonder if he had the patience necessary to deal with the early struggles he was destined to experience after altering his batting stance during the first day of Spring Training.

But much to his own surprise, Johnson proved patient through the early part of the Grapefruit League season and now finds himself heading into Spring Training's final week with a sense of confidence that was enhanced by the solo homer he hit during Sunday afternoon's 4-2 loss to the Pirates at Champion Stadium.

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Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Ramirez, Roenicke to discuss plan to keep veteran 'strong' in 2015

Ramirez, Roenicke to discuss plan to keep veteran 'strong' in 2015

MESA, Ariz. -- Aramis Ramirez plans to sit down with Brewers manager Ron Roenicke on Tuesday to discuss plans for keeping the veteran third baseman healthy and strong throughout the regular season.

Ramirez is entering his 18th season in the Major Leagues. He will turn 37 in June and has said this could be his final season as a professional.

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Austin Laymance is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Drabek throws bullpen session on first day in White Sox camp

Right-handed pitcher claimed off waivers from Blue Jays on Friday

Drabek throws bullpen session on first day in White Sox camp

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Kyle Drabek could be excused if the last few days have taken on a bit of a whirlwind, head-spinning quality.

"Hearing it, and then having to pack up my whole place in Florida and ship out the next day, and there's only five days, a week left," Drabek told reporters Sunday morning as part of his first day in White Sox camp. "So it's spinning a little bit."

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Digging in: 5 unheralded relievers to watch

Phillies' Giles joined by A's duo, Rays' Boxberger, Pirates' Holdzkom

Digging in: 5 unheralded relievers to watch

Relievers are a strange lot. Ostensibly the pitchers without the stamina, pitch repertoire or command to handle a starting role, they've taken on added importance. With runs coming at a premium, GMs have decided to load up on flame-throwing relievers and simply raze the opposition from the seventh inning on.

Though "Just look at the Royals" has become a common refrain this offseason -- for everything from speedy defenders to small-market principles -- the team's playoff push largely came on the backs of Greg Holland, Wade Davis and Kelvin Herrera.

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Michael Clair is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Johnson's homer backs Miller's strong six innings

Third baseman launches solo shot as righty allows one run on one hit in solid start

Johnson's homer backs Miller's strong six innings

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Pirates second baseman Jung Ho Kang halted his recent woes with a two-hit performance that was highlighted by the two-run, ninth-inning home run he drilled off Michael Kohn during Sunday afternoon's 4-2 win over the Braves at Champion Stadium.

"A very, very good day at the plate for him," Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle said of Kang. "He stayed on a breaking ball and lined out hard, singled sharply to center, then got all of that fastball. Nothing can breed confidence like success."

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Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gonzales, Heyward set pace for Cardinals

Starter continues stellar spring with strong 4 2/3 innings

Gonzales, Heyward set pace for Cardinals

JUPITER, Fla. -- Infielder Matt Reynolds, who is making a final push for a spot on the Mets' bench, singled and scored the go-ahead run during the sixth inning of New York's 3-2 victory over the Cardinals on Sunday.

Reynolds opened the inning with a hit off Cardinals reliever Seth Maness and moved to third on an Anthony Recker double. He then scored on a fielder's choice to push the Mets toward their Grapefruit League-best 16th win.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Luebke feels 'old arm' is back after bullpen session

Padres lefty rehabbing from second Tommy John surgery

Luebke feels 'old arm' is back after bullpen session

PEORIA, Ariz. -- Aside from being pain-free Sunday, the best part of Cory Luebke's bullpen session at the team's Spring Training facility was this:

"It felt like my old arm again," Luebke said.

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

House, McAllister earn rotation spots as Indians cull roster

Swarzak secures bullpen job, while Tomlin, Manship head to Triple-A

House, McAllister earn rotation spots as Indians cull roster

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- The Indians finalized their rotation Sunday, naming TJ House and Zach McAllister the Nos. 4 and 5 starters.

The right-handed McAllister will start the home opener against the Tigers on April 10 and the left-handed House will take the ball in the series finale April 12. House and McAllister join Corey Kluber, Carlos Carrasco and Trevor Bauer in a rotation likely to evolve throughout the season.

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Chris Gabel is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hamels named Phillies' Opening Day starter

Harang to follow left-hander in rotation

Hamels named Phillies' Opening Day starter

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg smirked Thursday when asked about his Opening Day starter.

"It's a secret," he said.

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Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone. Follow him on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Asche close to returning with an eye on Opening Day

Third baseman recovering from back tightness; Brown's return uncertain

Asche close to returning with an eye on Opening Day

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- The Phillies are down two starters this week because of injuries, but at least one of them is close to a return.

Phillies third baseman Cody Asche went 2-for-4 with a double in a Minor League game Sunday afternoon at Carpenter Complex. The Phillies scratched him from Thursday's lineup because of tightness in the middle of his back.

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Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone. Follow him on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Kintzler optioned to Triple-A as Brewers narrow bullpen race

Kintzler optioned to Triple-A as Brewers narrow bullpen race

MESA, Ariz. -- The Brewers narrowed the competition for the final spots in their bullpen on Sunday, as right-hander Brandon Kintzler was optioned to Triple-A.

Kintzler had struggled in the Cactus League with a 6.48 ERA in eight appearances. He allowed 13 hits in 8 1/3 innings with five strikeouts and five walks.

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Austin Laymance is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Smolinski's perseverance leading to Opening Day

Callup last season, strong spring could mean left-field job with Rangers

Smolinski's perseverance leading to Opening Day

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- A year ago, few people had heard of outfielder Jake Smolinski. Having signed with the Rangers as a Minor League free agent, he was toiling in relative anonymity on that side of the complex and getting ready to play in Double-A for the fourth straight year.

A career .258 batting average with a .401 slugging percentage explained why, as did the fact that he had never hit more than nine home runs or driven in more than 51 runs in a season.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Phil Rogers

Tito trusts young arms in Indians' rotation

AL Cy Young winner Kluber only pitcher in starting five with 200-inning season

Tito trusts young arms in Indians' rotation

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Every good starting pitcher grows up some time. He might be 22 and hitting the ground running, 25 and well prepared after a step-by-step climb through the Minor Leagues or 28 and ready to prove an organization or two wrong.

No matter how long it takes, the goal is to reach the point where he is ready to throw 200-plus innings on a contending team. The Indians hope that they have assembled that kind of rotation behind American League Cy Young Award winner Corey Kluber. But, at this point, all the Indians are doing is believing and hoping because they haven't yet seen a strong, complete Major League season from Carlos Carrasco, Trevor Bauer, Danny Salazar, Zach McAllister or TJ House.

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Phil Rogers is a columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Butler sees maturity as key to taking next step

Young right-hander revamped offseason routine

Butler sees maturity as key to taking next step

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Rockies right-hander Eddie Butler believes he has the stuff to pitch in the Majors, and he is intent on showing he can bridge the gap between stuff and success.

Butler, fighting for a spot in the season-opening rotation, could put up a strong argument on Monday afternoon, when he starts against the Athletics at Hohokam Stadium in Mesa, Ariz.

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Thomas Harding is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Hardball in the Rockies, follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb, and like his Facebook page, Thomas Harding and Friends at www.Rockies.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

McGowan feels good after back-to-back outings

Dodgers check out relief candidate in intrasquad game

McGowan feels good after back-to-back outings

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Dodgers president Andrew Friedman, manager Don Mattingly and pitching coach Rick Honeycutt made the trek to the Minor League side Sunday to watch reliever Dustin McGowan pitch in an intrasquad game.

McGowan, who allowed a long home run to Mike Trout of the Angels on Saturday, was pitching on back-to-back days for the first time this spring.

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Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Mariners option Elias, Smith to Triple-A, reassign 8 others

Moves could clear way for Walker to be named fifth starter

Mariners option Elias, Smith to Triple-A, reassign 8 others

PEORIA, Ariz. -- With just a week remaining until Opening Day, the Mariners moved closer to their final 25-man roster on Sunday by removing 10 players from Major League camp, including left-handed starter Roenis Elias and right-handed reliever Carson Smith.

The moves bring Seattle's roster to 28 players. The final 25-man squad must be set by Saturday, in preparation for the April 6 opener against the Angels at Safeco Field.

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Greg Johns is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB as well as his Mariners Musings blog. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.