All you need to know from the 1st day of Spring games

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All you need to know from the 1st day of Spring games

It's here, it's happening and it's oh-so-real. On Tuesday, 10 Major League teams squared off against each other for the first time since the World Series ended. While the starters didn't go very deep, plenty of players did. In the five games, there were 65 runs and 12 home runs.

But assuming you weren't glued to your MLB.TV machines, using a Clockwork Orange-like eye device to make sure you didn't miss a single second of spring action, here's what you may have missed: 

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MLB.com Columnist

Lyle Spencer

MadBum's mechanics -- and personality -- are stress-free

MadBum's mechanics -- and personality -- are stress-free

MESA, Ariz. -- Madison Bumgarner's first spring fling was no fun at all. The man who ruled October for the World Series champion Giants was hammered by the A's on Tuesday and didn't even get to swing his loud bat to vent any frustration.

None of it -- including the four runs and five hits he yielded while recording five outs -- was relevant in any way, shape or form. In the big scheme, MadBum got a feel for pitching again in game conditions and didn't hurt himself. His history informs him that good springs can lead to bad starts to the regular season, and the other way around.

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Lyle Spencer is a national reporter and columnist for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @LyleMSpencer. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Paul Hagen

Pace of play impacts more than just ballplayers

In-game entertainment, broadcasters also adjusting to new regulations

Pace of play impacts more than just ballplayers

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- One of the reliable old standbys during Grapefruit League games at Bright House Field mimics the classic television game show "Let's Make A Deal." A contestant standing on the dugout is allowed to choose between a nominal amount of cash or the contents of one of three boxes, two of which contain gag gifts.

The twist is that if the fan gets the harmonica or the rubber ducky instead of the gift certificates and autographed baseball, the ballpark emcee encourages the crowd to applaud. If they make enough noise, they're told, the fan will get the grand prize.

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

Venditte begins spring by recording an out with each arm

A's hurler shows off switch-pitching skills in Cactus opener

Venditte begins spring by recording an out with each arm

MESA, Ariz. -- What has become a routine act for Pat Venditte is an astonishing sight for those watching him.

The A's switch-pitcher introduced himself to the Cactus League on Tuesday, recording two outs against the Giants -- one with each arm -- as fans, and even teammates, ooed and aahed.

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

Cespedes starts Tigers tenure with grand slam

Cespedes starts Tigers tenure with grand slam

LAKELAND, Fla. -- Seven years after Miguel Cabrera marked his Tigers debut in Spring Training with a home run, Yoenis Cespedes' first hit in a Detroit uniform also had a similar impact. He drove a grand slam down the left-field line in the fourth inning of the Tigers' 15-2 victory against the Orioles on Tuesday at Joker Marchant Stadium.

"He's a strong man, so he will do that once in a while," Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said. "Hopefully he does it often. It was a good first day."

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Home run highlights Kang's successful debut

New shortstop connects on solo shot, plays solid defense in Bucs' victory

Home run highlights Kang's successful debut

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- Jung Ho Kang did not wait long to flash his power -- or his first "Z."

The sensation from Korea slugged his first home run in a Pirates uniform in his second at-bat of Tuesday's 8-7 win over the Blue Jays in the Grapefruit League opener, and it was impressive.

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Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog Change for a Nickel. Follow him on Twitter @Tom_Singer. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Porcello tosses two perfect innings in first Red Sox outing

Farrell pleased with initial look at righty, who utilizes all four of his pitches

Porcello tosses two perfect innings in first Red Sox outing

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- All arms on deck.

The Red Sox got their Spring Training schedule underway Tuesday, when they scratched out a 2-1 victory over Northeastern University as part of an exhibition doubleheader. Seven pitchers combined to work eight crisp innings for the Red Sox, and Northeastern's only run came as a result of an error.

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

Missed out on Trout? 5 options for No. 2 fantasy pick

Stanton, McCutchen, Goldschmidt, Kershaw and Miggy each have strong cases

Missed out on Trout? 5 options for No. 2 fantasy pick

Mike Trout is dominating the fantasy baseball landscape as much as any player has in recent years. The Angels' center fielder will be selected first overall in nearly every 2015 draft, so the real debate begins once Trout is taken. The second-overall selection is full of intrigue, as five players have a legitimate claim to be pick No. 2.

History has taught us that approximately 40 percent of top-five selections do not produce first-round value in the upcoming season. Owners who pick from the two-hole will be among the last to make their second-round pick, so choosing wisely when picking the centerpiece of their rosters is essential. Here's a look at all five options for the second overall pick:

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Fred Zinkie is a fantasy baseball writer for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @FredZinkieMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Goldschmidt singles in first at-bat since breaking hand

Goldschmidt singles in first at-bat since breaking hand

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Paul Goldschmidt picked up right where he left off last July, as the D-backs first baseman singled sharply up the middle in his lone at-bat in Tuesday's 4-0 win in an exhibition game against Arizona State University.

The at-bat was Goldschmidt's first since Aug. 1, when he was hit in the left hand by an Ernesto Frieri pitch in a game against the Pirates. The fastball fractured Goldschmidt's hand and sent him to the disabled list for the remainder of the season.

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Urias reminds Kershaw of early days with Dodgers

Cy Young winner familiar with experience of having attention at young age

Urias reminds Kershaw of early days with Dodgers

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Early hysteria over 18-year-old lefty Julio Urias reminds Clayton Kershaw of early hysteria over a 20-year-old Clayton Kershaw.

Kershaw said he has already talked to Urias about dealing with it all.

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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.

Syndergaard gets some tough love from Wright

Syndergaard gets some tough love from Wright

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Noah Syndergaard learned a rookie lesson the hard way during the Mets' intrasquad game Tuesday at Tradition Field.

As the middle innings played out on the main stadium field, Syndergaard, who was not scheduled to pitch, ducked inside to grab lunch. David Wright, who started at third base and was already out of the game, approached Syndergaard at the table and scolded him, according to multiple reports, telling the rookie that he should be on the bench supporting his teammates. Closer Bobby Parnell then grabbed Syndergaard's plate of food and threw it into the trash.

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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.

Samardzija finds comfort in intrasquad outing

Right-hander works two innings against teammates

Samardzija finds comfort in intrasquad outing

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- It was business as usual for right-hander Jeff Samardzija in Tuesday's intrasquad game at Camelback Ranch, his first game action in a White Sox uniform.

The veteran walked off the mound after the 33-pitch outing feeling good about his fastball.

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Jesse Sanchez is a national reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @JesseSanchezMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Abreu mourns loss of friend, mentor in Minoso

Abreu mourns loss of friend, mentor in Minoso

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- First baseman Jose Abreu is still mourning the loss of White Sox legend Minnie Minoso, and on Tuesday, the slugger opened up about the man he considered his mentor and good friend.

Minoso passed away on Sunday. Funeral services will be held this weekend in Chicago.

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Jesse Sanchez is a national reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @JesseSanchezMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bumgarner not sharp in Cactus League debut

Lincecum gives up one hit in one inning; Duvall homers

Bumgarner not sharp in Cactus League debut

MESA, Ariz. -- A's shortstop Marcus Semien made quite the first impression in green and gold, belting two home runs and finishing 3-for-3 with four RBIs in the club's Cactus League opener against the Bay rival Giants at Hohokam Stadium on Tuesday, which the A's won 9-4.

Three of those RBIs came against Giants southpaw Madison Bumgarner. Back on the mound for the first time since his World Series MVP performance, Bumgarner faced 10 batters and was tagged for four runs and five hits, including a two-run homer to Semien, with two strikeouts.

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

Red Sox, BC honor Frates, donate No. 3 jerseys to his ALS fund

Former Eagles captain created Ice Bucket Challenge, which has raised more than $200M

Red Sox, BC honor Frates, donate No. 3 jerseys to his ALS fund

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Pete Frates, a lifelong Red Sox fan and former captain of the Boston College baseball team, couldn't be there Tuesday to see his two favorite squads meet up at JetBlue Park. Yet if you looked around during the seven-inning contest between the Red Sox and BC, Frates was everywhere.

Every Red Sox jersey had the No. 3 and the name Frates on the back. Ditto for BC, the team Frates once belted a home run for at Fenway Park.

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Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Brownie Points, and follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Players, skippers quick to adapt to new pace rules

Players, skippers quick to adapt to new pace rules

While a number of players recorded their first official at-bat or tossed their first pitch of Spring Training on Tuesday, another first went largely unnoticed in the early games.

The new pace-of-play rules, which will be in effect at all Cactus League and Grapefruit League games this spring, did not seem to have much of an impact on Tuesday's play.

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

D-backs honor Prescott resident killed in Syria

D-backs honor Prescott resident killed in Syria

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The D-backs wore black patches with "KAYLA" on them on their left shoulders for Tuesday's exhibition game against Arizona State University in memory of Prescott resident Kayla Mueller.

The team will continue to wear the patches through the March 8 game against the Giants to honor Mueller, a human rights activist who died last month while being held captive in Syria.

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Phil Rogers

A's optimistic about prospects acquired in Samardzija trade

Quartet of youngsters could validate Beane's acumen once again

A's optimistic about prospects acquired in Samardzija trade

MESA, Ariz. -- Do Billy Beane and the A's still have the magic touch?

It sure didn't look like it last October when they paid heavily to add Jon Lester, Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel for the stretch run and postseason and then failed to hold a four-run eighth-inning lead over the Royals in the Wild Card game.

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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.

Lincecum shows flashes of dominance in spring debut

Giants pitcher strikes out two, gives up one hit in one inning

Lincecum shows flashes of dominance in spring debut

MESA, Ariz. -- Tim Lincecum displayed skills and shortcomings alike within a four-batter span Tuesday in the Giants' 9-4 Cactus League loss to the A's.

Lincecum demonstrated his potential for dominance, striking out two and reaching two-strike counts to each hitter he faced while working the third inning. He also proved susceptible to lapses as he surrendered Ben Zobrist's leadoff double and wild-pitched him home.

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Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Neshek has autographs from Ruth, Napoleon

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Neshek has autographs from Ruth, Napoleon

Pat Neshek, who now pitches for the Astros, has put together a pretty solid eight seasons in the Majors. He's compiled a 2.78 ERA, made his first All-Star appearance last season and has become a reliable force out of the bullpen for five different teams. And during that time, he's also developed one of the greatest autograph collections in the history of autograph collections.

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Howard focused on nothing but positives

After offseason of obstacles, Phillies' first baseman eager to keep mind on baseball

Howard focused on nothing but positives

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Ryan Howard could have come to Phillies camp last month in a miserable mood and with a scowl on his face.

Howard's offseason included a lawsuit between himself and his family, a concerted effort by the organization to trade him and a local radio interview in which his general manager said the Phillies would be better without him. But Howard showed up with a smile, and unless he is putting on an Oscar-worthy performance, he has maintained an upbeat appearance.

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

Cespedes hits year's first grand slam

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Cespedes hits year's first grand slam

Some signs of spring are eternal -- when the weather starts to get warmer, flowers bloom, birds sing and Yoenis Cespedes hits massive home runs.  

Thankfully we know we're not trapped in a decades-long Westeros winter because in Lakeland on Tuesday, the grass was green, the birds were out (well, in the form of the Orioles), and Cespedes was mashing.

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Iglesias set to suit up vs. Orioles on Wednesday

Iglesias set to suit up vs. Orioles on Wednesday

LAKELAND, Fla. -- Jose Iglesias will be back in the Tigers' starting lineup Wednesday against the Orioles after he had Tuesday's Grapefruit League opener off. He has played one inning in the first couple games of Detroit's schedule, but he's about to get a slow uptick in play.

"At some point, we're going to have to find out if he can take the grind," manager Brad Ausmus said Tuesday. "We'll ease him into it."

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

New shortstop Semien homers twice in Cactus League debut

A's greet Giants' Bumgarner with collective cycle in first inning

New shortstop Semien homers twice in Cactus League debut

MESA, Ariz. -- A's shortstop Marcus Semien made quite the first impression in green and gold, belting two home runs and finishing 3-for-3 with four RBIs in the club's Cactus League opener against the Bay rival Giants at Hohokam Stadium on Tuesday, which the A's won 9-4.

Three of those RBIs came against Giants southpaw Madison Bumgarner. Back on the mound for the first time since his World Series MVP performance, Bumgarner faced 10 batters and was tagged for four runs and five hits, including a two-run homer to Semien, with two strikeouts.

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

Rosario shows athleticism in work at first base

Rosario shows athleticism in work at first base

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Playing first base under game conditions went fine for the Rockies' Wilin Rosario on Tuesday.

Rosario, a catcher who could increase his playing time by being adequate at first base, made two error-saving plays in one inning. On a pickoff move from pitcher John Lannan, Rosario leaped over baserunner Matt McBride to keep the ball from sailing into foul ground. He also made a nice pickup of a pickoff attempt from catcher Michael McKenry.

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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.

Minny reunion: Torii, Garnett are talk of town

Star athletes return to Twin Cities where professional careers took off

Minny reunion: Torii, Garnett are talk of town

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Even Torii Hunter is amazed by the parallels between his return to the Twins and Kevin Garnett's recent homecoming with the NBA's Minnesota Timberwolves.

Hunter, 39, was a first-round pick by the Twins in the 1993 First-Year Player Draft, playing in Minnesota from 1997-2007, while Garnett, 38, was a first-rounder with the T-Wolves in 1995, and he also played in Minnesota until 2007.

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Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, and follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Buchanan has no issue with flying below radar

'Nobody' at camp last year, righty aims to lock up No. 5 spot in Phils' rotation

Buchanan has no issue with flying below radar

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Phillies right-hander David Buchanan entered Spring Training last year as a last-minute invite to camp and a relative unknown outside the organization.

But Buchanan, who allowed five hits and one run over two innings in Tuesday's 5-5 tie with the Yankees at Bright House Field, enters this camp as the favorite to be the team's No. 5 starter behind Cole Hamels, Cliff Lee, Aaron Harang and Jerome Williams.

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

For Rockies, developing versatility key part of approach

For Rockies, developing versatility key part of approach

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- In the Rockies' world, a player may need to move around to move up.

Rockies shortstop prospect Trevor Story started Tuesday's intrasquad game at second base, and later moved to third. Switch-hitting prospect Rosell Herrera has played 438 Minor League games, with all his defensive appearances at shortstop or third base. But he started in center field Tuesday. Story split last season between Class A Modesto and Double-A Tulsa, and Herrera spent the year at Modesto. But by increasing versatility, both could make themselves Major League options by year's end.

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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.

De La Rosa to start D-backs' Cactus League opener

De La Rosa to start D-backs' Cactus League opener

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Right-hander Rubby De La Rosa, acquired in the offseason trade that sent Wade Miley to the Red Sox, will get the start for the D-backs in their Cactus League opener on Wednesday afternoon against the Rockies at Salt River Fields.

Chase Anderson, Aaron Blair, Braden Shipley and Dan Runzler are also scheduled to take the mound in the 1:10 p.m. MT matchup, which will be available via an exclusive free audio webcast on MLB.com.

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Seeking late-inning job, Delabar back to basics

Seeking late-inning job, Delabar back to basics

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- Steve Delabar finds himself in the unusual position of having to compete for a roster spot after two years when he was essentially guaranteed a job coming out of camp.

Pitchers without guaranteed jobs in Spring Training often have to walk a fine line. On one hand, they may need to work on a particular pitch or specific location, even if that means sacrificing some initial results. On the other, those same pitchers need to impress the many eyes that will be watching them in camp.

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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.