Statcast on display as Jay runs down liner

Data tracking shows Cardinals' center fielder reaching top speed of 17 mph for catch

Statcast on display as Jay runs down liner

The fact that the Washington Nationals and St. Louis Cardinals opened a series Tuesday night in the nation's capital and offered a possible preview of an intense postseason matchup made tuning in a given.

The fact that it marked the live television debut of Statcast made it simply historic. And a lot of fun.

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

Rodon has trouble locating zone in debut

CHICAGO -- White Sox left-hander Carlos Rodon made his Major League debut Tuesday night against the Indians.

Rodon relieved starter Hector Noesi with two outs and runners on first and third in the sixth inning with the White Sox trailing by a 2-1 margin.

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Statcast shows Jay hitting top gear in center

Cardinals outfielder reaches 17 mph to rob Zimmerman of hit in third inning

Statcast shows Jay hitting top gear in center

Statcast was off and running on Tuesday night, and so was Jon Jay.

The revolutionary technology that tracks just about everything and everyone on a baseball field made its televised debut on the MLB Network showcase game between the Cardinals and Nationals in Washington, D.C., and Jay, the fleet-footed St. Louis center fielder, was featured early in the game for a defensive gem.

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

Stanton belts one into visitors' bullpen in Philly

Stanton belts one into visitors' bullpen in Philly

PHILADELPHIA -- With the Marlins down a pair of runs to the Phillies in the fourth inning Tuesday night, right fielder Giancarlo Stanton changed the momentum of the evening with a 449-foot solo homer into the visitors' bullpen -- which is above the home bullpen -- at Citizens Bank Park.

Stanton hit a 3-2 cutter from Phillies starter Jerome Williams to right-center field to pull the Marlins within 2-1 with his third home run of the season. Stanton has struggled over the first 13 games of the season, as he entered the night hitting .239 with 11 RBIs, but he has hit over .300 on the current 10-game road trip.

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

Statcast exit velocity: Cruz vs. Harper

Seattle slugger redirects pitch at 119 mph; Nats star's homer tracked at 109.5 mph

Statcast exit velocity: Cruz vs. Harper

Who hits the ball the hardest in Major League Baseball? For the first time in history, we might be able to get an answer, and it's thanks to the revolutionary technology of Statcast.

With Tuesday night's showcase game between the Cardinals and Nationals featuring the state-of-the-art Statcast trackers for the first time on television, we can see the St. Louis and Washington sluggers in action and see just how hard they hit the ball based on exit velocity numbers.

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

Howard, Phillies power up, rally past Marlins

Howard, Phillies power up, rally past Marlins

PHILADELPHIA -- Both the Phillies and Marlins entered this week's three-game series at Citizens Bank Park desperate for victories.

The Phillies struck first Tuesday night with a 7-3 victory. Ryan Howard hit a two-out, two-run home run to center field in the sixth inning to hand the Phillies a one-run lead. It was Howard's first home run of the season. He followed Freddy Galvis' two-run homer in the second and preceded Ben Revere's two-run triple in the seventh as the Phillies scored a season-high seven runs.

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

Scioscia: Hamilton needs 'a lot of evaluation'

Scioscia: Hamilton needs 'a lot of evaluation'

ANAHEIM -- Angels manager Mike Scioscia said Tuesday that outfielder Josh Hamilton (right shoulder surgery) will report to the club's training facility in Arizona in the near future to begin baseball activities.

"We'll see where Josh is," the manager said. "A lot of evaluating needs to take place, both on and off the field. I know Josh is itching to get going.

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

Ortiz gets 1 game for contact with ump, will appeal suspension

Ortiz gets 1 game for contact with ump, will appeal suspension

ST. PETERSBURG -- Red Sox slugger David Ortiz decided to appeal a one-game suspension and undisclosed fine from Major League Baseball, enabling him to start Tuesday night's game against Rays right-hander Chris Archer.

Ortiz received the discipline for making contact with umpire John Tumpane during the fifth inning of Sunday's game against the Orioles at Fenway Park.

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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.

Pence unlikely to return by end of month

On DL with broken arm, outfielder hasn't resumed full-time baseball activities

Pence unlikely to return by end of month

SAN FRANCISCO -- Giants manager Bruce Bochy discounted the possibility of right fielder Hunter Pence recovering from his fractured left forearm in time to rejoin the lineup May 1, which has been the most optimistic estimate mentioned for his return.

Bochy said Tuesday that activating Pence from the disabled list by that date appeared "less likely."

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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.

Statcast top speed: Gordon vs. Hamilton vs. Trout

Reds' center fielder eclipses competition in analysis of recent stolen bases

Statcast top speed: Gordon vs. Hamilton vs. Trout

If you're in Miami, Cincinnati or the greater Los Angeles area, the fastest man in baseball is likely playing in a stadium near you.

Cincinnati center fielder Billy Hamilton, Miami second baseman Dee Gordon and Angels center fielder Mike Trout are widely considered three of the main contenders for this unofficial crown, and with the advent of Statcast technology, it's easier than ever to determine who is the fleetest of foot.

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

Maddon confident Russell can handle Majors

Despite prospect's youth, Cubs believe he's ready for big leagues

Maddon confident Russell can handle Majors

PITTSBURGH -- The Cubs considered how Addison Russell was hitting, how he performed this spring, how the big league team needed help at second base. But manager Joe Maddon looked at another element of Russell's game.

"When you're going to possibly promote somebody like him with limited experience, you have to look at the person," Maddon said Tuesday prior to Russell's Major League debut with the Cubs. "Do you think the guy can handle it? I'm not worried about him handling success -- how can he handle failure?

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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.

MLB.com Columnist

Fred Zinkie

@Fantasy411 fields fans' questions on Twitter

@Fantasy411 fields fans' questions on Twitter

MLB.com fantasy guru Fred Zinkie fielded questions from fans during a live Twitter chat at @Fantasy411 on Tuesday. Check out the chat transcript below and check out the @Fantasy411 Twitter handle and MLB.com's fantasy home. Questions and answers have been edited for clarity.

Q: @PG3Phil Could Phillies prospect Maikel Franco be the next big name to get a big league call?

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Fred Zinkie is a senior 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.

Lucroy expected to miss 4-6 weeks with broken toe

Maldonado to take over behind plate

Lucroy expected to miss 4-6 weeks with broken toe

MILWAUKEE -- The Brewers anticipate being without catcher Jonathan Lucroy for the next four to six weeks because of the severity of his broken left toe, which Lucroy detailed in a statewide radio interview Tuesday.

"It's fractured right in half," Lucroy said on the Bill Michaels Sports Network. "You just have to kind of leave it alone and let it heal on its own.

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

Redmond meets with owner Loria, GM Jennings

Redmond meets with owner Loria, GM Jennings

PHILADELPHIA -- Just after 4:30 p.m. ET on Tuesday, Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria walked through the visitors clubhouse at Citizens Bank Park and strolled directly to manager Mike Redmond's office. A few minutes later, general manager Dan Jennings joined the two -- as well as former Major League player Marlon Anderson -- and what was said after the door closed was kept private.

That said, it's not hard to imagine that the topic of conversation was the state of the team and Redmond's job. Especially after a report surfaced on Sunday that Redmond's job could soon be in jeopardy.

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

Harper called out after not retouching second base

Harper called out after not retouching second base

WASHINGTON -- Nationals left fielder Bryce Harper made a baserunning blunder in the third inning against the Cardinals on Tuesday night at Nationals Park.

With the Nationals leading, 1-0, and runners on first and second with one out, Ryan Zimmerman hit a deep fly ball to right-center field. Cardinals center fielder Jon Jay made a nice running catch and threw back to second base. It appeared both runners -- Jayson Werth and Harper -- made it back to second and first safely.

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

Angels call up Bedrosian to give bullpen a fresh arm

Angels call up Bedrosian to give bullpen a fresh arm

ANAHEIM -- The Angels recalled right-handed reliever Cam Bedrosian from Triple-A Salt Lake on Tuesday afternoon and optioned first baseman/outfielder Efren Navarro to the same club.

"Some of the guys in our 'pen are throwing well, but they have also been throwing a lot, so we needed a little depth," manager Mike Scioscia said before the Halos' game against the Athletics at Angel Stadium.

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

Recovering Mesoraco rejoins Reds in Milwaukee

Catcher's playing status up to team's medical staff

Recovering Mesoraco rejoins Reds in Milwaukee

MILWAUKEE -- All-Star catcher Devin Mesoraco, who has missed the last seven games with a left hip impingement, has rejoined the team and said he is available on a limited basis.

"I'm available to pinch-hit right now," Mesoraco said before Tuesday's game against the Brewers at Miller Park. "My hip's still bothering me a little bit."

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

Rendon to start Minor League rehab assignment Friday

Rendon to start Minor League rehab assignment Friday

WASHINGTON -- Nationals third baseman Anthony Rendon, who hasn't played a regular-season game this season because of a sprained left MCL, will begin a Minor League rehab assignment on Friday, said manager Matt Williams.

In an extended spring training game on Tuesday, Rendon played three innings and had a couple of at-bats. On Wednesday, Rendon is expected to play five innings and then will be off Thursday.

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

MLB.com Columnist

Anthony Castrovince

5 debates we can't wait for Statcast to settle

All aspects of the game under microscope as technology debuts tonight

5 debates we can't wait for Statcast to settle

Statcast makes its 2015 debut on tonight's MLB Network Showcase game between the Cardinals and Nationals, and the technology is going to arm fans, scouts, executives and coaches alike with a deluge of data that helps them better understand and evaluate what is taking place on the field.

It's even going to help settle some arguments.

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Anthony Castrovince is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his columns and follow him on Twitter at @Castrovince. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

V-Mart facing righties a day-to-day decision

Swinging left-handed an issue for slugger

V-Mart facing righties a day-to-day decision

DETROIT -- The Tigers are scheduled to face right-handed starting pitchers for the rest of the week. It appears manager Brad Ausmus will be checking with Victor Martinez each of those days to see how he feels swinging left-handed, the side that has given Martinez trouble in recent days with his surgically repaired left knee.

If Martinez feels good, he'll play. If not, he'll likely get a day off. It's going to be a day-to-day decision, Ausmus confirmed.

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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.

Injury report: Hardy joins Triple-A for rehab work

Wieters scheduled to begin catching in Florida; Schoop fitted for knee brace

Injury report: Hardy joins Triple-A for rehab work

TORONTO -- Orioles manager Buck Showalter provided a roundup of injury updates on Tuesday before the Orioles' series opener against the Blue Jays at Rogers Centre.

Shortstop J.J. Hardy (left shoulder strain) flew to Virginia to join Triple-A Norfolk on Tuesday morning to work out. He hit off a tee and took grounders. Showalter did not have an updated timeline for Hardy's rehab.

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Jamie Ross is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Travis needs another day of rest; Reyes returns

Blue Jays' rookie second baseman hit by pitch on rib cage Sunday

Travis needs another day of rest; Reyes returns

TORONTO -- Devon Travis was held out of Tuesday night's game against the Orioles because of a contusion on his left rib cage but remains optimistic he won't need a lot of time off.

Travis expressed optimism about returning to Toronto's lineup for Wednesday's game. He was considered questionable for the series opener against Baltimore but was ruled out after going through a series of pregame drills.

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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.

Cubs supportive of Russell playing second

Prospect had experience at position for five games prior to debut

Cubs supportive of Russell playing second

PITTSBURGH -- How long has Addison Russell been playing second base? Five games.

That apparently was all the Cubs needed to see. The Cubs' No. 2 prospect, Russell started at second on Tuesday in his Major League debut.

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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.

Swisher, Walters ready to go on rehab assignments

Swisher, Walters ready to go on rehab assignments

CHICAGO -- Nick Swisher (surgery on both knees) and Zach Walters (right oblique) are expected to begin rehab assignments this week with the Indians' Triple-A Columbus affiliate.

Swisher, who's been taking part in extended spring camp, will join the club on Thursday and play on Friday, while Walters will begin his assignment on Wednesday.

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

MLB.com Columnist

Richard Justice

Price incident exemplifies tricky manager-media relationship

Outburst by Reds manager shows how constant access can cause tensions to elevate

Price incident exemplifies tricky manager-media relationship

We shuffle in quietly, heads down and form a loose semi-circle around the desk. On this night, there will be no awkward waiting around for someone to ask the first question.

"Just line us up and shoot us!"

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Richard Justice is a columnist for MLB.com. Read his blog, Justice4U. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Nathan scheduled for rehab appearance

Tigers reliever to pitch for Triple-A Toledo, could return to Majors by end of week

Nathan scheduled for rehab appearance

DETROIT -- Joe Nathan could be ready to return from the disabled list by the end of the week. And the Tigers, in turn, could soon be forced to make a decision on their closer.

Nathan, who has spent the last couple weeks on the disabled list with a right elbow flexor strain, is scheduled to make a rehab appearance Wednesday for Triple-A Toledo. The Mud Hens have a 10:30 a.m. ET game scheduled as part of a School Celebration Day promotion, meaning much of the crowd at Fifth Third Field will be school kids on field trips.

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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.

McClendon confident Iwakuma will get back on track

Normally reliable Seattle veteran is off to a rocky start this season

McClendon confident Iwakuma will get back on track

SEATTLE -- Hisashi Iwakuma, one of the most consistent right-handers in Major League Baseball over the past two and a half seasons, has gotten off to a rocky start in 2015 for the Mariners. But manager Lloyd McClendon said Tuesday the Japanese veteran just needs time to straighten out some issues.

Iwakuma is 0-1 with a 6.61 ERA in three starts and gave up four runs -- including two solo homers -- in 5 1/3 innings in Seattle's 7-5 loss to the Astros on Monday before McClendon gave him an early hook after 71 pitches. That's a far cry from the pitcher who had posted a 2.97 ERA in 77 starts -- the ninth-best mark in the Majors -- since joining Seattle's rotation on July 2, 2012.

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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.

Off to strong start, Padres plating plenty of early runs

Off to strong start, Padres plating plenty of early runs

DENVER -- The Padres couldn't be happier with their start to the season. They entered Tuesday night's game 9-5 and in second place in the National League West, a year after starting the season in fourth place at 6-8.

This year, the fast starts have begun in the first inning, and Monday's five-run frame was no exception. Through their first 14 games, the Padres scored the most first-inning runs in the Majors, outscoring opponents by a tally of 16-5, and they had the second-best batting average in that frame at .359.

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

Fields nears return, but Astros keep plan close to vest

Reliever recovering from strained groin at Triple-A Fresno

Fields nears return, but Astros keep plan close to vest

SEATTLE -- Astros manager A.J. Hinch admitted there's nothing really left for relief pitcher Josh Fields to show the club on his rehab stint at Triple-A Fresno, which indicates the right-hander could be activated as soon as this weekend in Oakland.

Fields, who strained his groin near the end of Spring Training, has made five rehab appearances at Fresno, including two scoreless innings Monday night. He threw in back-to-back games last week. Hinch texted Fields on Tuesday to see how he was doing.

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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.

Wilhelmsen cleared to start playing catch Friday

Mariners reliever has been sidelined since April 11 with hyperextended elbow

Wilhelmsen cleared to start playing catch Friday

SEATTLE -- Mariners reliever Tom Wilhelmsen, sidelined since April 11 with a hyperextended elbow, has been cleared to begin playing catch Friday after being reexamined by the club's doctors Tuesday.

Wilhelmsen will be eligible to come off the 15-day disabled list Saturday, but likely will need at least another two weeks until he'll be ready to pitch again. Manager Lloyd McClendon said the hope is for the big right-hander to throw a bullpen at some point during the Mariners' next road trip, which starts Monday in Texas, as he begins the return process.

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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.