PT TODAY: Cards closer race still wide open

Team-by-team playing time allocation charts can be found in our Teamview pages.

National League | American League
 
Cardinals | Andrew Miller may miss Opening Day
St. Louis Cardinals RP Andrew Miller (undisclosed), who has been having a hard time getting a feel for his pitches this spring, is doubtful to ready by Opening Day, general manager John Mozeliak said Saturday, March 7.  Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch - Derrick Goold
 
BHQ take: Given that Miller is likely to start the year on the IL - and given that he had a rough second half in 2019 (4.79 xERA and 70 BPV after July 1) - we’ve removed his projected saves and moved them to other Cardinal relievers. For now, Giovanny Gallegos seems the favorite to close at the start of 2019. He was arguably St. Louis’ most effective reliever in 2019, compiling an 11.3 Dom, 5.8 Cmd, and 163 BPV, and last year’s closer, Carlos Martinez, now seems a lock to start the season in the Cardinal rotation. The Cards do have other options, including Ryan Helsley who approaches 100 mph on the radar gun and had some success in 2019. Note, however, that while he had a 2.95 ERA, his xERA was nearly three runs higher. Alex Reyes, once one of the top prospects in baseball is reportedly healthy and might also be a late inning option. However, he only threw 40 innings in 2019 and even less in 2018. Before then he was recovering from surgery. One other name not to forget: erstwhile Cardinal closer Jordan Hicks who is due back sometime after the All-Star break.  —Phil Hertz
 
Impact: Med
Helsley, Ryan    PT Gain: 1%  SV Gain: 5%
Gallegos, Giovanny       SV Gain: 15%
Reyes, Alex       SV Gain: 5%
Miller, Andrew M    PT Loss: -1%  SV Loss: -10%
 

 
Reds | Kyle Farmer seeing more reps at SS
Cincinnati Reds C/INF Kyle Farmer has been seeing more reps at shortstop with SS Freddy Galvis (quadriceps) on the shelf. 'Kyle Farmer's been playing there a lot of over the last few days. I know he had a good game there (Saturday),' manager David Bell said Sunday, March 8.  Source: The Cincinnati Enquirer - John Fay and Bobby Nightengale
 
BHQ take: While Galvis is expected to return to action in coming days and to be fully healed well before Opening Day, Farmer might have established himself as a viable backup at the position. Farmer saw action at each of the other three infield positions as well as catcher in 2019. He could even spell Galvis occasionally against at least some opposing LHP. While switch-hitter Galvis hits for higher BA with a much higher contact rate vs. LHP, he draws so few walks as a RHB that his OBP is seldom higher than as a LHB facing RHP. He shows considerably more power vs. RHP.   —Tom Kephart
 
Impact: High
Farmer, Kyle        
Galvis, Freddy        
 

 
 
 
American League | National League
 
Orioles | Baltimore claims Hector Velazquez
Boston Red Sox RHP Hector Velazquez was claimed off waivers by the Baltimore Orioles Sunday, March 8.   Source: MASNSports.com - Roch Kubatko
 
BHQ take: With the state of the Oriole pitching staff, Velazquez could find a niche with the team. In 2018, he appeared in 47 games, including eight starts. He wound up throwing 85 innings with a solid 3.18 ERA; however, his xERA was 4.57 with a poor Dom of 5.6 and a BPV of only 55. Things went downhill in 2019, he spent much of the year in Triple-A and his ERA jumped more than two runs over his 2018 mark and virtually matched his xERA of 5.41. His BPV was a poor 37. All of these numbers suggest a PASS in all but the deepest of leagues.  —Phil Hertz
 
Impact: Med
Velazquez, Hector    PT Gain: 2%   
 

 
Red Sox | Alex Verdugo still not swinging
Boston Red Sox OF Alex Verdugo (back) has not resumed swinging a bat and it remains uncertain when he will be cleared to do so, according to manager Ron Roenicke. He is recovering from a stress fracture in his back and there is no timetable for his return.  Source: MLB.com - Anthony Castrovince
 
BHQ take: It is not a huge update, though there had previously been some mildly encouraging news about Verdugo's resumption of baseball activities being imminent. As a result, we will nudge his playing time down just a tick and give it to Kevin Pillar, who may be something close to an everyday player until Verdugo is ready to hit the field. The other pivot would be to have Jose Peraza play outfield and let Michael Chavis handle second base. Chavis' roster spot recently became more secure when Boston optioned Bobby Dalbec to the minors.  —Kris Olson
 
Impact: Low
Verdugo, Alex PT Loss: -5%      
Pillar, Kevin PT Gain: 5%      
 

 
Orioles | Trey Mancini to miss time
Baltimore Orioles OF Trey Mancini (undisclosed) is scheduled to undergo a non-baseball medical procedure next week and will miss some time, according to manager Brandon Hyde.   Source: MASNSports.com - Roch Kubatko
 
BHQ take: Until there’s more information forthcoming, we’ve only made a slight reduction in Mancini’s playing time, but more could be forthcoming. Mancini, of course, has been very productive for three years now and is coming off a season in which he hit 35 homers and had an xBA of .283, so a prolonged absence will not be good for the Orioles or his fantasy owners. Which player might benefit from Mancini’s medical procedure? Dare I say, Chris Davis? Davis has started the spring red hot with an OPS of 1.850 through 18 plate appearances. It is, of course, just spring training, but somewhere I recall, “Once you own a skill . . .”  —Phil Hertz
 
Impact: High
Mancini, Trey PT Loss: -5%      
Davis, Chris PT Gain: 5%      
 

 
Yankees | Stress fracture for Aaron Judge
New York Yankees OF Aaron Judge (rib) has been diagnosed with a stress fracture in one of his ribs. He will be reevaluated in two weeks, but surgery has not been ruled out.   Source: MLB.com - Bryan Hoch
 
BHQ take: While the stress fracture diagnosis solves the mystery of the root cause of Judge's long-lingering pectoral pain, it may not ultimately delay the start of his season much beyond what had already been known. That will hinge on whether in two weeks doctors determined Judge needs surgery or not. For now, we'll just tick Judge's playing time projection down another slight notch, with a similar-sized bump to Clint Frazier. Check back in two weeks to see if the call for Judge to go under the knife has been made.  —Kris Olson
 
Impact: High
Frazier, Clint PT Gain: 5%      
Judge, Aaron PT Loss: -5%      
 

 
Indians | Carlos Carrasco to be limited
Cleveland Indians RHP Carlos Carrasco (elbow) will be limited over the next few days because of mild elbow inflammation. Manager Terry Francona does not seem concerned about Carrasco's elbow.   Source: MLB.com - Mandy Bell
 
BHQ take: Carrasco's elbow inflammation is merely the latest health issue to beset the CLE starting rotation. He already had been suffering from a reported mild hip strain before encountering the elbow issue. With fellow starter RHP Mike Clevinger sidelined for several weeks of the regular season by a knee issue, and RHP Aaron Civale currently shut down with a troublesome groin, there could be a season-opening rotation slot or slots available for one or perhaps both of RHP Jefry Rodriguez and LHP Logan Allen to join RHP Adam Plutko as injury replacements. Carrasco posted his typical elite skills despite pedestrian results in 2019 before being diagnosed with leukemia in June. He returned as a late-season reliever, limited to 80 IP for the season.   —Tom Kephart
 
Impact: High
Plutko, Adam        
Clevinger, Michael        
Carrasco, Carlos        
Civale, Aaron        
Allen, Logan        
Rodriguez, Jefry        

 

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Playing Time Key

The playing time percentage changes at the bottom of most news items correspond to BaseballHQ.com's Teamview pages. The percentages approximate changes in AB, IP and Saves in the following manner:

  • For batters, each 5% of PT% ~ 31 AB (100% total for each position = 618 AB)
  • For pitchers, each 3% of PT% ~ 44 IP (100% total for a team's entire pitching staff)
  • For relievers, each 5% of Svs ~ 2 saves (100% of a team's total = about40 saves)

A complete explanation of BaseballHQ.com's playing time allocations can be found in the article "How the Projections are Created."


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  For more information about the terms used in this article, see our Glossary Primer.