Play Fantasy The Most Award Winning Fantasy game with real time scoring, top expert analysis, custom settings, and more. Play Now
 
Tag:Brad Bergesen
Posted on: February 10, 2012 10:59 am
 

Spring position battles: American League East



By Matt Snyder


Here we are for the fifth of six installments of spring positional battles. This one is the mighty AL East, the most polarizing and probably best division in the majors.

Previous spring position battles: AL West | NL West | AL Central | NL Central

New York Yankees
Designated Hitter: Andruw Jones vs. Russell Branyan vs. Free Agent vs. Revolving Door

I still feel like the Yankees will sign either Johnny Damon, Raul Ibanez or Hideki Matsui -- any of whom likely nails down this job full-time. But it's undecided as of right now, and wide open. Will Andruw Jones or Russell Branyan hit well enough to justify being the full-time DH? Maybe, or maybe they platoon -- as Jones hits from the right side while Branyan is a lefty. Or maybe the Yankees use bench players like Eduardo Nunez, Bill Hall and Chris Dickerson in the field while using starters like Alex Rodriguez, Derek Jeter and Nick Swisher at DH a few times a week in order to keep guys healthy and in tip-top shape.

Tampa Bay Rays
No. 4-5 starters: Jeff Niemann vs. Wade Davis vs. Matt Moore vs. Six-man rotation

Talk about a nice "problem" to have. The Rays obviously have David Price, James Shields and Jeremy Hellickson as the top three in the rotation. While there isn't a big problem with either Niemann or Davis, it's time to find a place in the rotation for Moore and I'm certain they will. The 22-year-old left-hander was awesome in his limited time in the majors last year, including a stellar outing against the Rangers in Texas for Game 1 of the ALDS. Moore's already received the type of team-friendly contract Evan Longoria got when he was a rookie -- as Moore is signed through 2016 with club options running all the way through 2019. So the question is, do the Rays demote either Niemann or Davis to the bullpen or trade one of them? Niemann would be the trade candidate, as Davis also has a team-friendly contract with club options that take him through 2017. And I doubt this happens, but the Rays could always go with a six-man rotation. Seeing how this plays out will a big spring storyline.

Boston Red Sox
Shortstop: Nick Punto vs. Mike Aviles vs. Jose Iglesias

After trading both Marco Scutaro and Jed Lowrie this offseason, the Red Sox are left with what appears to be Mike Aviles against Nick Punto at short. Punto had a good offensive campaign by his standards last season, when he hit .278 with a .388 on-base percentage. He only had six starts at shortstop, though, and his career numbers don't indicate he's worthy of an everyday gig at shortstop. Aviles also only started six games at short last season, and he only hit .255/.289/.409. He did hit well for the Red Sox, but it was a small 107 plate appearance sample. So the choice between Punto and Aviles is dubious defensively and neither is a good offensive option. Enter Iglesias, the dazzling defensive prospect. He's a dreadful hitter -- his line in Triple-A was .235/.285/.269 last season -- but it's not like Aviles or Punto are going to be confused with Troy Tulowitzki or anything. Maybe the Red Sox just plant Iglesias in the nine-hole and enjoy the exceptional defense?

Corner Outfield spots: Cody Ross vs. Ryan Sweeney vs. Carl Crawford and his health

Crawford is said to be questionable for the start of the season after undergoing minor wrist surgery a few weeks ago. If he's healthy, he starts in left easily while Sweeney and Ross battle it out for the right field job. If Crawford can't start the season, Ross and Sweeney are the corner outfielders, yet still fighting for the right field job for when Crawford returns. At some point, Ryan Kalish will return from offseason shoulder surgery and could eventually fight for playing time in right field as well.

Toronto Blue Jays
Outfield logjam: Colby Rasmus vs. Eric Thames vs. Rajai Davis vs. Travis Snider

We know who mans right field, but these four guys are competing for the other two spots. Thames in left field and Rasmus in center seem the most likely, but Davis will get a shot at either spot and Snider is in the mix for left.

No. 5 starter: Dustin McGowan vs. Kyle Drabek

This may bleed up into the No. 4 starter as well, but I'll give Brett Cecil the nod for now, since he is left-handed. The top three are Ricky Romero, Brandon Morrow and Henderson Alvarez. So, for now, I'll guess the last spot comes down to McGowan and Drabek. McGowan was once a very promising young arm. He went 12-10 with a 4.08 ERA, 1.22 WHIP and 144 strikeouts in 169 2/3 innings back in 2007, when he was 25. He then made 19 starts before falling injured in 2008 and finally just resurfaced late last season -- two shoulder surgeries and one knee surgery later. Does he have anything left? He was good in 12 minor-league starts in 2011, but had a 6.43 ERA and 1.57 WHIP in the small sample of 21 innings pitched for the Blue Jays. Drabek was a top 30 prospect each of the past two years, according to Baseball America, but he fell flat last season for the Jays. He had a 6.06 ERA, 1.81 WHIP and more walks than strikeouts for the big-league club. Even worse, he was knocked around for Triple-A Las Vegas, to the tune of a 7.44 ERA and 2.03 WHIP in 75 innings. Walks, again, were an issue with Drabek issuing 41 compared to 45 strikeouts. Prospects Deck McGuire and Drew Hutchison could also figure in the mix eventually, but this feels like Drabek vs. McGowan heading into March.

Baltimore Orioles
The entire pitching staff: Johnny Wholestaff vs. Joe Allstaff

So let's see ... the following pitchers might have a chance at the starting rotation: Zach Britton (very safe bet), Jason Hammel (safe bet), Jake Arrieta, Brad Bergesen, Brian Matusz, Chris Tillman, Dana Eveland, Wei-Yin Chen, Tsuyoshi Wada, Alfredo Simon and Tommy Hunter. That's quite a mix of pitchers to sift through, but the job isn't overwith yet, because we have to look at the bullpen.

Three pitchers -- Jim Johnson, Matt Lindstrom and Kevin Gregg -- will compete for the closer job, with Troy Patton, Pedro Strop and Darren O'Day also being part of the bullpen mix. Of course, guys like Simon, Hunter and Bergesen will get a shot in the bullpen if they miss out on the rotation, too. There are more (Willie Eyre, Armando Galarraga, etc.), but I already named 17 pitchers vying for 12 spots.

We could probably move Simon and Hunter to the bullpen while eliminating Eveland from the starting mix, but that still leaves eight guys in competition. In the bullpen, Johnson seems the best bet to win the closer gig, with Lindstrom and Gregg setting up. Add Strop, Patton, Simon and Hunter and you have your seven. But, again, we've thrown out Eveland and there would still be three extra starters along with O'Day, Eyre et al on the outside looking in.

I'll say one thing: Orioles manager Buck Showalter and pitching coach Rick Adair won't be bored this spring. Maybe frustrated, but definitely not bored.

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnBaseball on Twitter, subscribe to the RSS feed and "like" us on Facebook.
Posted on: December 11, 2011 6:35 am
 

Homegrown Team: Baltimore Orioles

Erik Bedard

By C. Trent Rosecrans


What if players were only permitted to stay with the team that originally made them a professional? No trades, no Rule-5 Draft, no minor or major league free agency ... once you are a professional baseball player, you stay in that organization. This series shows how all 30 teams would look. We give you: Homegrown teams. To view the schedule/past entries of this feature, click here.

The Orioles haven't had a winning season since 1997, and part of that has been the team's inability to draft, sign and cultivate its own players. Even the teams with the biggest payrolls, like the Yankees and Red Sox, have learned the lesson that you need to have a steady crop of homegrown players, not only to keep costs down, but also to have the commodities to trade if needed. The Orioles' Matt Wieters emerged as an All-Star in 2011 and Brian Roberts has had a solid career, but the team has still struggled to produce a consistent pipeline to the majors, and when those players have gotten there, they've often disappointed.

Lineup

1. Brian Roberts, 2B
2. Mike Fontenot, SS
3. Nick Markakis, RF
4. Jayson Werth, 1B
5. Matt Wieters, C
6. Nolan Reimold, LF
7. Jerry Hairston Jr., 3B
8. Willie Harris, DH
9. Darnell McDonald, CF

Starting Rotation

1. Erik Bedard
2. Zach Britton
3. Jake Arrieta
4. Brad Bergesen
5. Brian Matusz

Bullpen

Closer - David Hernandez
Set up - Arthur Rhodes, Jim Johnson, Koji Uehara, Jason Berken, Pedro Beato, D.J. Carrasco

Notable Bench Players

Eli Whiteside is the backup catcher, and a pretty good one. But other than that, the Orioles' bench is thin. Brandon Snyder? Ryan Adams? That's about all the team has to offer.

What's Good?

The middle of the lineup -- Markakis, Werth and Wieters is solid and the bullpen is deep. Other than that? Not much.

What's Not?

Take your pick -- the rest of the team's lineup isn't up to snuff. The rotation, minus Bedard, is similar to the real team's rotation in 2011. And then there's not much depth, either in the rotation or the lineup.

Comparison to real 2011

Only the Astros, Twins and Mariners had a worse record than Baltimore's 67-95 mark in 2011, and this team could be even worse. The rotation is about the same and the offense isn't as good without J.J. Hardy, Adam Jones and Mark Reynolds. The Orioles once were known for throwing money at free agents and not developing their own players, now they just don't develop their own players. A team of homegrown Orioles could challenge the 100 loss mark and maybe even the worst record in baseball.

Next: Washington Nationals

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @eyeonbaseball on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.
Posted on: May 20, 2011 12:29 pm
 

Pepper: Scorching Hafner could hit DL



By Evan Brunell


HAFNER HURT: Indians DH Travis Hafner is hitting like it's 2006, as the oft-injured DH is roaring along at a .345/.409/.549 clip with eight doubles and five home runs in 127 plate appearances.

Sure, that average is over his head, but he's still geared up to have a quality season. It's about time, as Hafner has been one of the game's most overpaid players as he succumbed to injuries following his four-year, $57 million deal signed during the 2007 season. He's been a major reason why Cleveland finds itself in first place, and has helped fend off any type of decline that could have happened once Grady Sizemore hit the disabled list.

Unfortunately, Hafner may be joining Sizemore on the DL with a sore oblique. He was taking swings in the batting cage prior to Wednesday's game when one swing left him unable to swing any more. After being a late scratch, Hafner plans to get the injury checked out Friday with a MRI.

"One of the big things was how it felt [Thursday] morning," said Hafner. "It wasn't worse. That's kind of encouraging."

Obliques are the scourge of baseball these days, and unfortunately for Hafner, he's probably going to have to go on the DL and could be out for a month or more. (Cleveland Plain Dealer)

LEYLAND'S BACK
: Jim Leyland still lives in Pittsburgh, but he hasn't been back in the stadium as an opposing manager since 2006, his first year with the Tigers. Leyland, of course, is well known for his 11 years managing the Pirates in the glory days, back when Barry Bonds was manning left field. (MLive.com)

RJM:
A nice story about Ricky Romero and J.P. Arencibia's night on Thursday. Romero went seven strong while J.P. Arencibia crushed a home run that eventually gave the team a 3-1 victory. Both players were reeling from the passing of a two-year-old fan after a battle with leukemia. (Toronto Star)

UNPRECEDENTED:
Jose Bautista's leap from last man on the bench to the best hitter in the game is still tough to wrap one's head around. But it's not the last time such a leap has been made. The closest comparable? Seattle's Bret Boone, who jumped in relevancy from 1999-2001. Of course, the likelihood that Boone used steroids is high, but unless you're really reaching or just hate Bautista/the Blue Jays, the same questions are not there for Bautista. (Fangraphs)

TURNING THE CLOCK BACK:
It's always entertaining to see players wear throwback uniforms. Sometimes these uniforms are preferable to the current set... sometimes they're nice memories or a way of learning more about history. Sometimes, they make us burst out laughing. History's being profiled Saturday when the Red Sox and Cubs wear 1918-era uniforms. (Boston Globe) Here's a look at what you can expect -- the 1918 uniforms of the BoSox and the 1918 road uniforms for the Cubs. And yes, no logo for the Red Sox.

FLIPPING THE BIRD
: Sometimes I wonder if we take ourselves a little too seriously. Andre Ethier, who was slightly irritated with a photographer prior to Monday's game, flipped him the bird before adding the other hand to the equation. Ethier joked about the situation before Thursday's game before issuing a standard mea culpa. "I wasn’t [angry] at all. If you’re going to stand there and take the same picture for 15 minutes, what’s the difference between the first and the 15th minute? It just got kind of annoying. I guess I slipped up, and that temper you guys sometimes like to write about, got ahead of me and I didn’t use my head and use the best judgment in that situation. I made a mistake of it and it’s unfortunate." Don't we have better things to worry about? (Los Angeles Times)

DISLIKED:
Are the Cardinals the most disliked team in baseball? Let's look at the evidence. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

WHERE'S ALLIE?
When talking about Pittsburgh Pirates pitching prospects (try saying that four times in a row), the conversation invariably turns to Jameson Taillon and Stetson Allie. Except that Allie is nowhere to be found on the stats pages. That's because he's been at extended spring training, working on his windup and a lack of control. Things have progressed to the point where he is nearing game action. (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

LIND ETA:
Adam Lind won't be back with the Blue Jays for at least 10 days and is still a week away from baseball action in his recovery from a sore back. (Sportsnet via Twitter)

WHO'S OUT IN BALTIMORE? When Alfredo Simon returns to the Orioles' bullpen on Sunday, someone's gotta go. Bet on one of Brad Bergesen or Chris Tillman, as Jeff Zrebiec writes. Both -- especially Bergesen -- have been very poor in the rotation and the team can go with four starters for several days because of Brian Matusz's looming return late next week. (Baltimore Sun)

JOHN SMOLTZ RULE: John Smoltz effected a rule change in minor-league baseball while on a rehab assignment with the Red Sox in 2009. Now, major-league pitchers on rehab starts down on the farm can use major-league baseballs in games. (MLBlogs.com)

TWITTER CLOSED: Tony Sanchez closed his Twitter account amid what we thought were the Pirates being too sensitive about players going on Twitter and expressing a personality. However, Sanchez closed his account on his own (although a stern talking-to from the brass didn't help). Sanchez was benched three games for criticizing umpires. (Pittsburgh Tribune-Review)

GOLD: A pretty neat promotion the Angels are putting on in which fans will get an autographed baseball from a player. Those lucky enough to end up with a gold baseball will then get to meet that player and get four tickets to another Angels game. (Orange County Register)

DL-BOUND: Joe Blanton is returning to the DL and will take Shane Victorino with him. The Flyin' Hawaiian has been hobbled the last few days and now the Phillies have decided they can't wait for him to heal much longer. Don't expect Domonic Brown's promotion, as GM Ruben Amaro continues to hold Brown back. (Wonder if it has to do with service time?) Anyways, expect either Delwyn Young or Ronnie Belliard to get the spot. (CSNPhilly.com)

NO MORE TOBACCO: The call to ban all types of tobacco in baseball only got stronger with the Diamondbacks' CEO Ken Kendrick calling for such a ban. (Arizona Republic)

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.
Posted on: May 14, 2011 11:42 pm
 

3 up, 3 down: Billingsley, Bergesen dazzle

Billingsley

By Evan Brunell


Chad Billingsley, Dodgers -- Billingsley actually drew the loss, but it was far from his fault. He went eight strong, limiting the Diamondbacks to just one hit and an unearned run, walking two and whiffing eight. Hardly deserving of a loss, no? The "loss" dropped his ERA to 3.36, which is 21st in the NL which sounds unimpressive but the 26-year-old appears to be returning to the dominance of his 2008 season. The Dodgers are sorely in need of some good news amid the fracas surrounding the owner, Frank McCourt, and declining attendance. Billingsley is that guy.

Ramon Hernandez, Reds
-- A fine performance for Hernandez, who is actually playing less than Ryan Hanigan these days. That should change, as Hernandez contributed a 3-for-3 night with two runs scored and two RBI, adding a walk and punching two home runs off of Kyle McClellan. The night, which was already high in tension given Johnny Cueto's first start against St. Louis since effectively ending Jason LaRue's career, ended in a 7-3 Cardinals victory. The win pushed the Reds to half a game ahead of St. Louis for the divison lead.

Brad Bergesen, Orioles -- Who saw this coming? Bergesen is a good-enough No. 4/5 starter, but a complete game against the first-place Rays, limiting them to four hits? Yeah, didn't see that coming. Yet, that transpired Saturday as Bergesen punched out five Rays to one walk. Sadly, this probably is his career highlight, but it's quite a fine one, indeed. The win was his first of the year against four losses and pushes Baltimore to two under .500, with Tampa Bay holding onto a two-game lead over the Yankees thanks to a suddenly surging Red Sox taking down New York.



Juan Rivera, Blue Jays -- Rivera did end up scoring a run in the 11th thanks to walking, but prior to then he was 0-for-4 with four strikeouts. That's just not going to fly, especially since Toronto has been trying to deal Rivera and his slightly-bloated contract the second they gladly took it from the Angels to dump Vernon Wells. Rivera is at .217/.314/.283 on the season. At this rate, not only is he untradeable, but he's at risk of being released by Toronto if and when they deem Travis Snider ready to return.

Aaron Harang, Padres -- Harang put together his fourth straight disastrous outing by turning in a 4 1/3-inning effort against the Rockies, giving up seven runs, four walks and seven hits. He punched out a paltry seven, and Harang's ERA is all the way up to 5.05. Not exactly what people expected after his hot start to the season combined with his new home in Petco Park. He'll get a chance to right himself next week against the Brewers at home.

Gavin Floyd, White Sox -- Floyd has been pretty good for the White Sox and has been one of the saving graces of their brutal season, but Saturday he contributed to it with five earned runs in 4 1/3 innings against the Athletics, which isn't easy to do in Oakland's park. Floyd's been so solid this season, the effort only pushed his ERA to 4.22.

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.
Posted on: April 6, 2011 4:33 pm
Edited on: April 6, 2011 4:51 pm
 

Guthrie out of hospital

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Orioles pitcher Mark Guthrie is out of the hospital and could return as soon as Sunday.

The right-hander announced his own release on Twitter:

Guthrie Tweet

Guthrie was originally scheduled to start tonight's game against the Tigers, but was hospitalized Monday for pneumonia. Brad Bergesen will start instead.

The Orioles would net need a starter on Sunday against the Rangers, and Buck Showalter said he has Guthrie penciled in for that start -- for now.

"That's still very tentative at this point, until we have an idea what we're dealing with over the next couple of days," Showalter told reporters (via MASNSports.com's Roch Kubatko ).

The Orioles opening day starter threw eight shutout innings in the team's season-opening victory over the Rays.

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb  on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.

Posted on: April 4, 2011 12:32 pm
Edited on: April 4, 2011 6:50 pm
 

O's rotation gets another shakeup

UPDATE (6:45 p.m. EST): Guthrie has been diagnosed with a form of pneumonia and scratched from his scheduled Wednesday start. Brad Bergesen will get the ball in his absence.

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Jeremy Guthrie The Orioles' rotation shuffle may not be done as Wednesday's starter, Jeremy Guthrie went to the hospital with a viral infection on Monday, Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun tweets .

The Orioles are hoping Guthrie, pictured, can still make his start Wednesday against the Tigers, but if not, Brad Bergesen would replace him.

"He started running a fever yesterday," manager Buck Showalter told reporters, including MASNSports.com's Roch Kubatko . "We thought we got it under control. Talking to him last night when we got here, he felt pretty good, but somewhere between that and today, his fever spiked back up. He's over there now trying to get a grip on what we're dealing with.

"I'm not sure if he'll be here or not. I expect him to probably come in and give us an update on where he is with it, but right now he's still tentatively scheduled to pitch on Wednesday. We'll see what the next couple of days bring. We'll probably make a decision on that tomorrow."

Bergesen had been expected to be the team's fifth starter, but started the season in the bullpen because the team wouldn't need a fifth starter until April 10.

The Orioles already had to mess with their rotation when Brian Matusz went on the disabled list on Friday due to back pain. To make up for Matusz's injury, the team moved Chris Tillman up a day to start on Saturday against Tampa Bay, while the team called up Zach Britton from Triple-A to start Sunday against the Rays.

Even with the shuffling, the Orioles starters have been good through three games. Guthrie went eight shutout innings on opening day, Tillman didn't allow a hit in six innings on Saturday and Britton gave up just three hits and a run in six innings yesterday. Jake Arrieta makes his first start of the season this afternoon against the Tigers.

Scouts told CBSSports.com senior writer Danny Knobler that Britton may have been the Orioles' best pitcher this spring and even better than hyped Yankees prospect Manny Banuelos.

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb  on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.
Posted on: March 25, 2011 1:40 pm
Edited on: March 25, 2011 3:50 pm
 

Bergesen struck in arm by line drive

By Matt Snyder

We have another pitcher struck with a line drive. Friday's victim was Orioles starting pitcher Brad Bergesen. Denard Span hit was has been called a "hot smash," "liner" and "screaming line drive" on Twitter by those in attendance. Fortunately the shot didn't hit Bergesen in the head, but it did nail his right (pitching) arm. One writer pointed out, however, that the blow was reminiscent of one in July of 2009 that ended Bergesen's season. On the bright side, the injury this time around is reportedly a deep bruise. He has gone for X-Rays, though. (Baltimore Sun via Twitter)

UPDATE: The X-Rays have come back negative. It's a bruise. Even better news is that Bergesen at least kept his sense of humor after the ordeal, as he said his outing was a no-hitter. (School of Roch )

Bergesen is battling for the fourth starter spot with Chris Tillman. He was 7-5 with a 3.43 ERA in 2009, but had a rough 2010 season, as the ERA rose all the way to 4.98. He allowed 193 hits in 170 innings. Bergesen was having a rough spring, too, sporting a 5.94 ERA. Opposing hitters are batting .373 against him.

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.
Posted on: March 15, 2011 11:01 pm
Edited on: March 15, 2011 11:02 pm
 

3 up, 3 down for 3/15: Ellsbury's back

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Jacoby Ellsbury3 UP

1. Jacoby Ellsbury, Red Sox -- The Red Sox center fielder certainly appears recovered from the broken ribs that limited to just 18 games last season. This spring, he's hitting .414/.452/.724. His second homer of the spring came Tuesday off of Detroit's Justin Verlander, who allowed only one other hit in his start.

2. Brett Wallace, Astros -- The guy the Astros got for Roy Oswalt struggled last season, but is having a pretty decent spring -- buoyed by his performance on Tuesday, when he went 4 for 5 with two doubles, a grand slam and seven RBIs.

3. Jordan Lyles, Astros -- The Astros' top pitching prospect retired all six batters he faced against the Orioles, striking out three, including Luke Scott and Vladimir Guerrero. The 20-year old is expected to start the season at Triple-A Round Rock, but could make the Astros' choice for fifth starter difficult.

3 DOWN

1. Brad Bergesen and Kevin Gregg, Orioles -- Bergesen gave up three run on four hits and two walks, and only half of his 52 pitches went for strikes. In his last three starts, Bergesen's allowed 10 earned runs on 16 hits and five walks. He was "relieved" by Gregg, who got just one out, but gave up three hits and a walk, while giving up five runs, including a grand slam.

2. Alfonso Soriano, Cubs -- In the fifth inning of the Cubs' game against the Rockies, Soriano caught Esmil Rogers' sacrifice fly in shallow left field and unleashed a throw into the visitors' dugout, allowing another run to score. Soriano is under contract until 2014, so Cubs fans have four more years of his attempts at defense. But hey, he's owed just $72 million for those four years.

3. Wade LeBlanc, Padres -- The lefty gave up seven hits, six runs and a walk in five  innings against the Angels. Torii Hunter, Vernon Wells and Mark Trumbo homered off of him the fourth. Battling for the fifth spot in the team's rotation, LeBlanc has a 9.22 ERA this spring.

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.

More MLB coverage
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com