Matt Kemp hit a double and stole a base in Sunday's loss to the Dodgers.
Kemp finished the game 1-for-3 with a run scored, a stolen base and a double. The steal was his fourth of the season and a good sign for his legs, as he's clearly feeling decent enough to run. He finished the series against his former team with five hits in 11 at-bats, plus two steals and three runs scored, plus one ejection for arguing the home plate umpire. Productive series for Kemp, who's hitting .350 with 14 RBI and 16 runs scored in April.
Craig Kimbrel pitched a perfect ninth inning against the Dodgers on Sunday, striking out two and locking down his sixth save of the year.
Kimbrel had allowed runs in each of his last two appearances, but there were no dramatics on Sunday. He entered the ninth inning with his team up 3-1 and went right at the Dodgers, fanning the first two hitters before getting Yasmani Grandal to foul out to end the game. Of Kimbrel's 13 pitches, 10 went for strikes. He's now 6-for-6 in save chances and holds a 2.16 ERA and 10/3 K/BB ratio over 8 1/3 innings. As long he's healthy, any little bumps in the road are just that.
Brandon Morrow pitched a gem against the Dodgers on Sunday, allowing just one run over seven innings.
This is the third time in four starts that Morrow has pitched seven innings (he went six innings in his other start). Pretty impressive for a guy who had to win the No. 5 spot in the rotation out of Spring Training. Against the Dodgers, he struck out four, scattered five hits and walked just one. Morrow's only mistake came on a solo home run by Alex Guerrero in the fifth inning. Otherwise, everything came up aces. Through 27 innings, he holds a 2.67 ERA and a 19/6 K/BB ratio. As long as he stays healthy, he has the talent to put up numbers. Morrow will look to continue his sparkling run on a mountainous road date with the Rockies next Saturday.
Scott Baker allowed three runs in seven innings in a loss to the Padres on Sunday.
Considering that Baker had been toiling away for Triple-A Oklahoma City prior to the game, this was a pretty impressive start. He lasted seven innings and struck out six while allowing just four hits and three runs. If Baker continues throwing well, there's no reason why the Dodgers wouldn't keep him in the rotation, especially given the tenuous nature of the team's pitching staff. Brandon McCarthy (elbow) and Hyun-Jin Ryu (shoulder) are both out for the foreseeable future and on top of that, the Dodgers are about to embark on a 17-game stretch without a day off. Long-time Twin Baker struggled in 2014, posting a 5.47 ERA in 80 2/3 innings for the Rangers, but the move to the NL should benefit the 33-year-old right-hander. He could be worth a look as a streaming option.
Royals optioned RHP Aaron Brooks to Triple-A Omaha.
Brooks was with the team just as the 26th man for Sunday's abbreviated doubleheader. He'll get another opportunity to pitch out of the Royals bullpen at some point during the season.
David Robertson allowed two hits to the Royals on Sunday, but still managed to secure his third save of the season.
Robertson has yet to allow a run this season, though he played with fire in his latest save attempt. With the White Sox holding a 5-3 lead, Alex Gordon hit a one-out single. Robertson then fanned Salvador Perez before allowing a Paulo Orlando base-knock to put runners on first and second. The former Yankee survived, though, inducing an Omar Infante grounder to walk away with his third save of the season. Through seven innings, he's compiled a 14/1 K/BB to go with that sweet 0.00 ERA. He could contend for the league lead in saves when all is said and done.
Edinson Volquez allowed five runs (one earned), all in the sixth inning, in Sunday's loss to the White Sox.
Outside of a rough sixth inning, Volquez pitched well, striking out six and walking just two while holding the White Sox to five hits. Only one run in that sixth frame was earned, as it was Mike Moustakas' run-scoring fielding error with runners on first and third which opened the floodgates. Volquez proceeded to serve up three singles to bring in an additional three runs. The fifth run would score on a single after the right-hander was lifted from the game. Because just one of the runs was earned, Volquez's ERA actually dropped in the contest. He has been absolutely superb the first month of the season, boasting a 0.85 WHIP and a 1.91 ERA over 27 1/3 innings. He'll be pushed back a day in the rotation as he serves a five-game suspension for his part in a Thursday melee with the White Sox, which puts him in line to start against the Tigers on an upcoming homestand.
John Danks struck out eight and allowed three runs over six innings in Sunday's win over the Royals.
Danks had just eight strikeouts coming into the game, but he left with the number doubled. The veteran southpaw also walked just one and allowed five hits in what was his best start of the season. Danks surrendered an RBI double to Mike Moustakas in the third and a two-run home run to Alex Gordon in the fourth, but otherwise kept the Royals quiet. He improved to 1-2 with the win. With that start in the books, he now holds a 5.64 ERA and 1.64 WHIP with a 16/6 K/BB over 22 1/3 innings. He'll try to piece together another decent performance when he faces the Twins in his next start.