Teixeira exits Minors game early with knee contusion

Yankees first baseman receiving ice treatment after getting hit by pitch

Teixeira exits Minors game early with knee contusion

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 at George M. Steinbrenner Field 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.

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.

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.

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.

Hamels named Phillies' Opening Day starter

Hamels named Phillies' Opening Day starter

The Phillies have reportedly set their rotation for the first two games of the regular season. Cole Hamels will draw the Opening Day assignment against the Red Sox and Aaron Harang is scheduled to follow him two days later, according to the Philadelphia Daily News.

Though it was widely assumed Hamels would take the mound on April 6, manager Ryne Sandberg had yet to officially announce the decision.

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Chad Thornburg is a reporter for MLB.com. 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.

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.

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.

Arm fatigue to keep Garcia off Opening Day roster

Visit with team physician reveals no new injury

Arm fatigue to keep Garcia off Opening Day roster

JUPITER, Fla. -- A Sunday morning visit with a team physician revealed no new injury for Jaime Garcia, but rather confirmed that the left-hander had trouble recovering from an 80-pitch simulated game on Tuesday.

Garcia, speaking a day after the club announced he'd be scratched from his next scheduled spring start, said he has been feeling left arm soreness and fatigue over the last few days, including during a side session on Thursday. When the discomfort didn't subside, Garcia alerted the Cardinals' medical staff.

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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.

Giants send 11, including Susac, to Minors

Giants send 11, including Susac, to Minors

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The Giants took a major step toward shaping their season-opening roster Sunday by reassigning or optioning 11 players to the Minor Leagues.

Andrew Susac, who finished last year's World Series-winning season as San Francisco's backup catcher, was among five players optioned to Triple-A Sacramento. Susac's departure assured Hector Sanchez of winning the backup catcher's spot. Also optioned to Triple-A were infielder Adam Duvall, outfielders Gary Brown and Juan Perez and right-hander Hunter Strickland.

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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.

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.

Blue Jays' hopes rest heavily on rotation vitality

Club features solid starting five, but lack of depth a concern; Estrada could prove critical

Blue Jays' hopes rest heavily on rotation vitality

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- The Blue Jays have aspirations of contending this season, but their chances of competing likely will come down to the health of the starting rotation.

Toronto seems to have more depth in most areas of its roster compared to previous years except for the starting staff. That's one aspect of the organization that has to be a major concern as the start of the regular season rapidly approaches.

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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.

Will Ferrell responds to John Madden's ST #HotTake

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Will Ferrell responds to John Madden's ST #HotTake

National treasure Will Ferrell is still applying full-court pressure on his publicity tour for "Get Hard," his new movie with comedian Kevin Hart, which means he's got plenty of opportunities to discuss his recent tour de Cactus League.

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Key for Bruce is health, not spring results

Reds right fielder says he feels 'awesome' physically

Key for Bruce is health, not spring results

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Jay Bruce's results in Cactus League games would suggest he's not locked in yet for the regular season. Fortunately for a veteran like the Reds' right fielder, results aren't the most important thing right now. That won't be until April 6, when the season opens vs. the Pirates.

What does count now is that Bruce is feeling good when he's at the plate, which was something he could not say last season.

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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.

Showalter: Keeping both Verrett, Garcia difficult

Club likes Rule 5 pitchers, but carrying pair on roster would affect bullpen, staff

Showalter: Keeping both Verrett, Garcia difficult

SARASOTA, Fla. -- Orioles manager Buck Showalter acknowledged Sunday that it would require a trade for the Orioles to keep both Rule 5 Draft pitchers: Logan Verrett and Jason Garcia.

Of the two, Verrett -- who has allowed two earned runs over 12 innings -- appears to be the more likely player the O's will keep. They really like Garcia as well, but it would be tough to have two more players who are unable to be optioned in the 'pen without clearing a spot with a trade of another reliever. It would be difficult enough to just keep one.

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Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Injuries may force Williams to shuffle lineup

Leadoff hitter Span set for DL; Opening Day status of Werth, Rendon in question

Injuries may force Williams to shuffle lineup

VIERA, Fla. -- With the start of the season nine days away for the Nationals, manager Matt Williams will need a contingency plan in case some of his major players are not ready for Opening Day.

Center fielder Denard Span will start the season on the disabled list because of a surgically repaired rectus abdominis (abdominal) muscle. And it's still up in the air if third baseman Anthony Rendon (left knee) and outfielder Jayson Werth (right shoulder) will start the season on time. One has to think that being on the 25-man roster when the Nats break camp is in jeopardy for both players.

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

Yanks bring back Burton three days after release

Right-hander sidelined with strained lat; Davies, Mitchell sent to Minors

Yanks bring back Burton three days after release

TAMPA, Fla. -- The Yankees re-signed Jared Burton to a Minor League contract on Sunday, agreeing on a new deal with the right-hander three days after he was released by the club, among several other transactions that trimmed their spring roster.

Burton, 33, has been sidelined since March 17 with a strained lat. He had an opt-out in his original contract that he planned to exercise, so the Yanks released him and then agreed to a new deal.

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Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch and read his MLBlog, Bombers Beat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

QB Wilson's Spring Training visit comes with deep ball

Seahawks star crushes home run to left-center field during BP

QB Wilson's Spring Training visit comes with deep ball

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson went deep again on Saturday. This time he wasn't throwing a bomb to Doug Baldwin, but taking Rangers third-base coach Tony Beasley over the left-field fence in batting practice.

"I lasered one out in left-center field," Wilson said during what has become an annual visit to Rangers camp in Spring Training. "That was good. I stayed back and was able to drive it to left-center. It feels good hitting a home run. There's something special about throwing a touchdown, because it's so hard to get touchdowns, but getting a home run is a good feeling too."

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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.

Mariners prospect Sanchez dies in Venezuela

The 20-year-old pitcher had been injured in boating accident in February

Mariners prospect Sanchez dies in Venezuela

PEORIA, Ariz. -- Victor Sanchez, one of the Mariners' top pitching prospects, died in Venezuela from head injuries sustained in a boating accident in his home country six weeks ago.

The Mariners confirmed the news Saturday night after MLB.com initially learned of Sanchez's death from his agent, Rafa Nieves. Sanchez was 20 years old and had been in the Mariners' Minor League system since signing as an international free agent at 16.

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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.

Cardinals weigh Opening Day roster flexibility

Three off-days over first 10 gives Matheny options

Cardinals weigh Opening Day roster flexibility

JUPITER, Fla. -- Seven days out from an Opening Night matchup against the Cubs, the Cardinals continue to weigh the various ways in which they could construct their roster because of the flexibility offered by a high concentration of early-season off-days.

Manager Mike Matheny acknowledged that the club is still discussing three possibilities. One is that they carry a fifth starter, even though the club doesn't have to use that starter until April 19. Taking one anyway would allow the Cardinals to build in extra rest for their other four starters and would leave them with the usual five bench players and seven relievers. The fifth rotation spot would be claimed by either Carlos Martinez or Marco Gonzales.

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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.

Red Sox tab Buchholz to start on Opening Day

Porcello will pitch second game and likely the home opener at Fenway

Red Sox tab Buchholz to start on Opening Day

FORT MYERS, Fla. - For Red Sox right-hander Clay Buchholz, who has pitched a no-hitter, made two All-Star teams and won a World Series, pitching on Opening Day for the first time will be another milestone moment in his career.

Red Sox manager John Farrell officially announced on Sunday that Buchholz will take the ball in Philadelphia on April 6. And even if it didn't come as much of a surprise, Buchholz was appreciative to be given the increased responsibility.

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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.

Sources: Mets, Duda discussing long-term contract extension

First baseman could be signed into his early 30s

Sources: Mets, Duda discussing long-term contract extension

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- The Mets and Lucas Duda are discussing a long-term contract extension, according to two sources familiar with the negotiations, which would keep the first baseman in Flushing well into his 30s. The Mets have not publicly acknowledged the negotiations, and general manager Sandy Alderson declined comment on Saturday afternoon.

Duda, 29, is set to make $4.2 million this season as an arbitration-eligible player, more than twice what he earned a year ago. He is under team control through the 2017 season, meaning any extension would be at least four years long -- covering his final three years of team control plus his first year of free agency. Such a deal would take Duda at least through his age-32 season, guaranteeing him a measure of security while giving the Mets a proven cleanup hitter for the foreseeable future.

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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.

Wilson, Casali in tight race for back-up catcher spot

Rays' Cash needs more time to make decision

Wilson, Casali in tight race for back-up catcher spot

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- The Rays have a pleasant problem: Two catchers they like competing for the back-up spot.

While Rene Rivera will be the starter, the Rays are confident his backup will be able to give the team some quality play since the choice is between Bobby Wilson and Curt Casali.

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

Time not on Pinto's side as season approaches

Short on preparation, Twins catcher not cleared to play due to concussion-like symptoms

Time not on Pinto's side as season approaches

SARASOTA, Fla. -- Twins manager Paul Molitor said time is starting to run out on catcher Josmil Pinto, who has yet to be cleared by Major League Baseball to return to action after suffering from concussion-like symptoms.

Pinto, who suffered the injury when he was hit on the head from Baltimore's Adam Jones' follow-through three times on March 21, didn't pass a concussion test on Friday, but the Twins were hopeful he'd pass his second test on Sunday and return to action in a Minor League game on Monday. But even if all goes well, Molitor said he's not sure if Pinto will have enough time to get ready for the start of the season, with Opening Day on April 6 in Detroit.

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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.

Price: Chapman may be asked to get more than three outs

Price: Chapman may be asked to get more than three outs

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Reds closer Aroldis Chapman has demonstrated effective pitching throughout the spring, but Saturday's outing was about as smooth as it could have been.

Against a Cubs split-squad, Chapman -- serving as the Reds' starting pitcher -- faced three batters and struck out the side in his only inning of work. Leadoff batter Dexter Fowler was called out on a 3-2 pitch. Arismendy Alcantara swung and missed on a fastball following a changeup for strike three. Jorge Soler ended the inning on a called third strike.

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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.

MLB.com Columnist

Dan O'Dowd

Leap year? 10 players poised for a breakout in 2015

Leap year? 10 players poised for a breakout in 2015

With Opening Day just around the corner, you're hearing a lot of people talking about "breakout players." In that spirit, here are 10 players I expect to make a leap toward stardom in 2015.

Kevin Gausman, RHP, Orioles
Gausman was dominant down the stretch last year, posting a 2.87 ERA with a strikeout per inning in his final five starts. He already has mid-90s heat and is just a click away from commanding a wicked slider that will make him a true No. 1 starter.

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Dan O'Dowd is an MLB Network analyst and MLB.com columnist who served as general manager of the Rockies for 15 years, building a National League pennant winner in 2007. Prior to his time with Colorado, he worked in the front offices of the Orioles and Indians. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Vazquez to visit Dr. Andrews for ailing elbow

Vazquez to visit Dr. Andrews for ailing elbow

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Red Sox catcher Christian Vazquez will visit Dr. James Andrews for a second opinion on Wednesday, and he should know then whether he will need right elbow surgery, which would knock him out for an extended period -- perhaps the season.

All Vazquez and the Red Sox have said thus far is that the MRI conducted on Friday showed "something."

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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.

One year later, Hank the Dog back in Ariz.

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One year later, Hank the Dog back in Ariz.

One year ago, Hank was a scared and lonely stray with matted white hair when he stumbled upon Brewers camp. 

The next 12 months were a whirlwind. After making the team and becoming its mascot, winning a Dog of the Year Award along the way, Hank returned to Phoenix, the Brewers' spring home. He's looking plenty different than those first days: 

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