Wired: Top Pickups for Week 19

Wired: Top Pickups for Week 19
Waiver Wired is back heading into Week 19. Blasts from the past like Ersan Ilyasova, Danilo Gallinari and Andrea Bargnani are relevant again.
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Matt Wieters (elbow) is scheduled to begin catch and throw drills on Monday.

Wieters isn't expected to be cleared to begin throwing with any real force until March 17, but Monday represents a big step in his recovery. To this point, he has been limited to playing long toss. So long as he avoids any setbacks, there's no reason to expect he won't be behind the dish when the O's open up the regular season.
Mar 1 - 6:19 PM

Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez announced Sunday that Wandy Rodriguez will start Wednesday's Grapefruit League opener against the Mets.

The veteran southpaw, who is battling for the fifth and final spot in the Braves rotation, is scheduled to throw two innings. He will be followed in Wednesday's start by Chien-Ming Wang who is challenging for the same role. Julio Teheran will get the nod against the Tigers on Thursday, putting him on track to start on Opening Day.

In Sunday's lone spring game, Aaron Altherr went 2-for-4 with an RBI double and a steal as the Phillies lost to the University of Tampa 6-2.

The Phillies were up 2-0 following fine performances from Paul Clemens and Rule 5 pick Andrew Oliver, but Phillipe Aumont gave up a run in the sixth and Nefi Ogando and Hector Neris combined to allow five in the seventh, leading to a somewhat embarrassing loss. The good news was that Ruben Amaro's nephew, Andrew, had a single and a bases-loaded walk for the Spartans. The Phillies didn't use any probable regulars in the contest.
Mar 1 - 5:08 PM

Alex Guerrero indicated in an interview with Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com that he has no intention of returning the minor leagues.

The 28-year-old stated, "I don't want to go down. I'm not going down. I feel like I can get better here at this level and play every day." Guerrero signed a four-year, $28 million deal with the Dodgers before the 2014 that included a clause that he can't be optioned to the minor leagues without his permission after his first season. That means the Dodgers will be forced to keep him on the roster in a reserve role, trade him elsewhere or release him.
Source: MLB.com
Mar 1 - 5:05 PM

Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon said Sunday that Austin Jackson will see extra rest this season in an effort to keep him fresh.

The 28-year-old outfielder appeared to wear down as the 2014 season neared its conclusion, hitting just .191 in September. While he struggled in his 54 games with the Mariners to finish the season, McClendon believes that Jackson is a dynamic talent and will be a catalyst atop the M's lineup in 2015.
Source: MLB.com
Mar 1 - 4:50 PM

David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal Constitution believes that Eric Young Jr. could be the early favorite to win the Braves' Opening Day job in center field.

Young Jr. has impressed the Braves coaching staff with his ability, conditioning and work habits early in camp. The 29-year-old is fresh off a disappointing 2014 season where he slashed .229/.299/.311 with one homer, 17 RBI and 30 stolen bases in 100 games with the Mets. Should he beat out Eury Perez for the job, he immediately gains mixed league relevancy.
Mar 1 - 4:29 PM

Mets manager Terry Collins said Sunday that Lucas Duda (oblique) is scheduled to begin hitting off a tee this week.

If all goes well, he'll advance to taking live batting practice the following week. The 29-year-old slugger has been dealing with a minor oblique issue for the past month or so and the team being sure to be cautious in his recovery. Duda is coming off a breakout season where he slashed .253/.349/.481 with 30 homers and 92 RBI in 153 games.
Mar 1 - 4:24 PM

Yoenis Cespedes said through his interpreter on Sunday that he's very comfortable with his new organization and is open to discussing a long-term extension.

Cespedes stated, "I would like to be in a Tigers uniform for a lot of years. This is a good team now and will be for a lot of years to come." The 29-year-old outfielder, who arrived in December's deal that sent Rick Porcello to the Red Sox, is set to hit free agency after the 2015 season.
Mar 1 - 4:13 PM
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