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Clayton Kershaw wasn’t himself Wednesday in the Dodgers’ Cactus League tie with the Mariners, scattering two hits, two runs and two walks over three uncharacteristically shaky innings.

Navigating a tough Mariners lineup, Kershaw struggled through a difficult first inning, walking two batters and giving up a pair of base hits. He was much better after that, only allowing one base runner over his final two frames (it came on an error by Mike Ahmed). Even after Wednesday’s clunker, Kershaw’s spring ERA still sits at a masterful 2.63. Expect the three-time Cy Young winner to go full throttle in his Opening Day start Monday against the Padres.
Mar 29 - 7:34 PM

Kyle Schwarber clubbed two homers Wednesday in the Cubs’ Cactus League win over the Athletics.

Schwarber led off the game with a solo homer to deep center field. He left the yard again in the fourth, hammering a two-run shot off Daulton Jefferies. The Cubs’ leadoff man has hit .275 with five homers and 14 RBI over 51 Cactus League at-bats this spring. The 24-year-old offers considerable fantasy value, even in leagues where he’s only eligible as an outfielder.
Mar 29 - 7:31 PM

John Lackey unraveled Wednesday in the Cubs’ Cactus League win over the Athletics, surrendering seven hits and seven runs over 3 2/3 ineffective frames.

He struck out three and walked one. Lackey was spotted a five-run lead but couldn’t hold onto it, allowing two runs in the third and five more in the fourth. If it’s any consolation, only two of the seven hits he gave up went for extra bases. Wednesday certainly wasn’t how Lackey wanted to end the spring but he should be in for another strong season after earning a terrific 3.35 ERA over 29 starts for the Cubs in 2016.
Mar 29 - 7:29 PM

Santiago Casilla fell flat Wednesday in the Athletics’ Cactus League loss to the Cubs, allowing two hits, five runs and two walks in only 1/3 of an inning.

We’re not sure why Casilla started—he’s never started a game in his big league career—but obviously he should stick to his day job. Casilla began his outing by serving up a home run to Kyle Schwarber. It only got worse from there as Casilla proceeded to walk two batters, hit one and allow a three-run homer to Albert Almora Jr. before finally getting the hook with one out in the inning. After flaming out in San Francisco last year, Casilla was looking to rebound on the other side of the bay in 2017. That plan is off to a rough start.
Mar 29 - 7:28 PM

Danny Duffy spanned four scoreless innings Wednesday in the Royals’ Cactus League tie with the Rangers, surrendering three hits while adding a pair of strikeouts.

He didn’t walk anyone. The Rangers got to Duffy for two singles in the first but he was bailed out by an inning-ending double play. Duffy settled down after that, retiring eight hitters in a row to end his outing. Fresh off getting a five-year, $65 million extension, Duffy has pitched to a relatively disappointing 4.30 ERA over four Cactus League starts. He excelled at the World Baseball Classic, however, allowing just one earned run over eight strong innings for the United States. He’ll get the ball Opening Day against Minnesota.
Mar 29 - 7:22 PM

Carlos Gomez tallied two hits Wednesday in the Rangers’ Cactus League tie with the Royals.

He was the only player on either team to log more than one hit. Of the nine total hits in Wednesday’s scoreless tie, none went for extra bases. Gomez has had a productive spring and may be getting overlooked in fantasy drafts. The two-time All-Star holds an impressive .361 average across 36 Cactus League at-bats.
Mar 29 - 7:21 PM

Dillon Gee turned in a strong outing Wednesday in the Rangers’ Cactus League tie with the Royals, yielding just two hits over six shutout innings.

He struck out nine and didn’t walk anyone. 51 of the right-hander’s 67 pitches went for strikes. Gee didn’t give up a hit until the fifth when Whit Merrifield finally broke through for a two-out single. The only other hit he allowed came in the sixth on an infield single by Peter O’Brien. Neither team scored a run in this game with Danny Duffy twirling four shutout frames for Kansas City. Gee will likely fill a long relief role for the Rangers this year.
Mar 29 - 7:19 PM

Dylan Covey drew the start for the White Sox in Wednesday’s Cactus League tie with the Padres, allowing three hits and two runs over one inning of work.

It was an unusually brief outing for Covey, though that was Chicago’s plan all along. Covey allowed hits to three of the five batters he faced with Wil Myers taking him deep for a two-run jack. The right-hander was used almost exclusively as a starter in the minor leagues but is hoping to crack the White Sox Opening Day roster as a middle/long reliever. He’s posted a lousy 7.82 ERA over nine Cactus League appearances.
Mar 29 - 7:16 PM
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