Use It or Lose It

Use It or Lose It
Mike Gallagher discusses Isaiah Thomas, Nerlens Noel, the MVP race, the Bulls and more in this edition.
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Ryan Howard said Tuesday that he cut sugar from his diet over the winter and has lost 15-20 pounds.

This comes a few days after Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro said that Howard showed up to camp in the best shape "since I've known him." It's no secret that the Phillies would like to move on from him, so it appears that he has used the constant speculation about his future as motivation. It might not result in better numbers at the plate, but it's something. As of now, Howard still projects to get most of the playing time at first base for the Phillies this season.
Mar 3 - 3:03 PM

Nick Castellanos left Tuesday's Grapefruit League game after suffering a left hand hand contusion.

Castellanos was hit in the hand by a pitch, but fortunately X-rays came back negative. He's considered day-to-day, so it's not a major concern.
Mar 3 - 2:58 PM

Jarrod Parker (elbow) hopes to throw live batting practice soon.

Parker, who is now almost a year removed from Tommy John surgery, threw 43 pitches in a bullpen session Tuesday without incident. He threw fastballs, changeups, and curveballs in the session. Interestingly, he's not incorporating sliders right now and even indicated that he could come back without the pitch.
Mar 3 - 2:33 PM

Danny Hultzen (shoulder) felt great Tuesday after throwing 28 pitches in his first batting practice session of the spring.

Hultzen missed all of last season while he was in rehab mode from rotator cuff and labrum surgery, but he entered spring training with no restrictions. The 2011 No. 2 overall pick has thrown 35 2/3 innings over the last two years, so the shine has worn off him as a prospect, but he'll try to get his career back on track this year.
Mar 3 - 2:14 PM

A.J. Griffin (elbow) threw 35 pitches off the mound on Tuesday.

Griffin, who is working his way back from Tommy John surgery, threw fastballs and changeups. However, he also mixed in some curveballs during a flat-ground session. The A's are hopeful the young right-hander will be ready to contribute around midseason.
Mar 3 - 1:44 PM

Jerome Williams came out of the bullpen to pitch in Tuesday's Grapefruit League game against the Yankees.

Williams was originally scheduled to start the game, but David Buchanan pitched instead. However, it appears that Williams is fine and the Phillies simply decided to flip-flop the order at the last mintue.
Mar 3 - 1:40 PM

Max Scherzer will start the Nationals' Grapefruit League opener Thursday against the Mets.

Scherzer, who signed a seven-year, $210 million contract with Washington over the winter, is expected to throw two innings in his first outing with his new club. He's expected to be followed by Tanner Roark, who currently projects to pitch out of the bullpen this season.
Mar 3 - 1:32 PM

Casey Kelly (groin) hopes to throw a side session on Friday.

Kelly suffered a minor groin strain early last week, but Padres manager Bud Black said Tuesday that he is increasing his intensity of baseball activities. If healthy, the 25-year-old projects to begin the season in the rotation with Triple-A Tucson.
Mar 3 - 1:25 PM
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