Evan Longoria hit an RBI double and three singles in Saturday's win over the Blue Jays.
With the game knotted at 1-1 in the eighth inning, Longoria singled to right with two outs to start a rally that would ultimately lead to a three-run inning for the home team. Longoria also slapped an RBI double off of Daniel Norris in the first inning. The third baseman came into the contest with a slash-line of just .218/.343/.382, but raised his average to a respectable .270 in just one day's work. Ah the joys of April averages. While Longoria remains a productive hitter in terms of home runs and RBI (especially for his position), he's seen his average, OBP and slugging drop in each of the last three seasons. Hopefully the 4-for-4 effort starts him on a hot streak.
Daniel Norris was incredibly effective on Saturday, limiting the Rays to just one run on five hits in the loss.
Norris struck out seven and walked three in the outing. After surrendering an RBI double to Evan Longoria in the bottom of the first inning, he didn't allow another run. The Blue Jays, and Norris owners, should be thrilled to see him last seven frames, especially given recent health concerns. On Wednesday, he underwent an MRI on his left arm, as the pitcher had been complaining about "dead arm." The MRI didn't turn up anything and after a few days of treatment, Norris certainly looked sharp on Saturday. He now holds a 4.43 ERA and 1.43 WHIP over 20 1/3 innings. The southpaw will take on the Indians in his next start.
Erasmo Ramirez's second start with the Rays was much sharper than his first, as he pitched four innings and allowed just one run against the Blue Jays.
In his first start with the Rays, Ramirez was lit on fire by the Blue Jays to the tune of nine runs (seven earned) in just 3 1/3 innings. In a repeat match-up on Saturday, the Rays pulled Ramirez after just four innings, but the end result was much improved. Ramirez allowed four hits, struck out two and walked one in the contest. The lone run surrendered came via a Josh Donaldson RBI single in the first inning. Ramirez dropped his ERA to 13.94 when all was said and done. If he gets another start, it will come against the Orioles.
Desmond Jennings left Saturday's game with left knee soreness.
Kevin Kiermaier took over for Jennings in center field to begin the eighth inning. Jennings went 1-for-3 with a pair of strikeouts before exiting. He's day-to-day.
Hisashi Iwakuma's MRI revealed a Grade 1 lat strain and he will miss 2-to-4 weeks.
Iwakuma didn't look right Tuesday against the Astros and was placed on the DL three days later. Now we know why his early season performance hasn't been up to snuff. Roenis Elias will be called up to take Iwakuma's place in the starting rotation.
Adam Wainwright was lifted from Saturday's game against the Brewers with an apparent left foot injury.
Wainwright pulled up lame on his first step out of the batter's box following a fifth-inning pop-out and could barely make his way off the field. It looked like an Achilles injury, though the Cardinals are calling it a "left ankle injury" for now. Wainwright had tossed four scoreless innings against Milwaukee, lowering his season ERA to 1.44. He'll be reevaluated back in St. Louis.
David Wright (hamstring) has advanced to hitting off a tee and throwing.
The next step is for him to test out his legs. A strained hamstring sent Wright to the DL on April 15. His three-week recovery timetable is still in play. Though Wright's fantasy value fell off a cliff last year (.269, 8 HR, 63 RBI in 535 at-bats), he was hitting a respectable .333 before getting hurt.
Jose Altuve went 2-for-5 with a three-run homer Saturday in the Astros' 9-3 rout of the A's.
Altuve hit his three-run shot off A's starter Kendall Graveman in the top of the second inning. He also singled in the top of the first but was caught stealing second base. The diminutive 24-year-old is batting .315/.367/.425 with two home runs and five steals in 17 games this season for the Astros, who are off to a 10-7 start.