Daniel Bard has been pretty bad all season in his transition from the bullpen to the rotation, but he took the ineptitude to a new level Sunday.
The 26-year-old became the first pitcher in MLB history to allow six walks and hit two batters in an outing that lasted fewer than two innings. He gave up five runs over 1 2/3 frames despite allowing just one hit. After the game, Bard, who now holds a 5.24 ERA, 1.62 WHIP with 38 walks over 55 innings, sounded like a guy that’s got too much going through his mind when on the mound.
“(I’m) constantly trying to tweak little things in (my) delivery to make the next pitch a little better than the last,” Bard said in the Boston Globe. Bard added, "I think we've tried to change a few too many things. Maybe just get back to being simple."
Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine hasn’t decided if Bard will make his next scheduled start, saying he’ll “think about it a while." Daisuke Matsuzaka (elbow) has allowed just one run over his last two outings at Triple-A Pawtucket, as he appears closer to being big league-ready. He would be an obvious choice as Bard’s replacement in the rotation. The Red Sox bullpen is in a groove right now, so Bard would likely be eased back into a major role if he is moved back to the pen.
Jones Has Wrist Issues
Adam Jones is still feeling the after effects of a hit by pitch on his left wrist from this past Wednesday, but it turns out that his right wrist is actually a bigger issue.
The new $85.5 million man has been nursing soreness in his right wrist for weeks now, and it was pain in that wrist that forced him to leave Sunday’s game. He’ll receive an MRI on both wrists later Monday.
“It just didn’t feel right,” Jones told MLB.com regarding his right wrist. “I can feel it when I’m hitting. [The doctors] wanted to get a picture of it and I wanted to get a picture of it, and see what’s going on in there so we can be sure and relieve any doubt.”
Jones’ status is up in the air until the results of the MRIs are known, but we can’t imagine that the right wrist is a major issue given that the 26-year-old has hit safely in 23 of his last 24 games. Fantasy owners will still understandably be holding their collective breaths, as Jones has been a monster this season, batting .315/.363/.602 with 16 homers, 34 RBI and nine steals.
Lee Lands on DL
Carlos Lee is one of the few players that give the Astros some sock in their lineup, but they’ll have to make do without him for at least the next couple weeks.
Lee was placed on the disabled list Sunday with a left hamstring strain, an injury that he suffered Friday while running out of the batter’s box on a double play ball. It’s not clear at this point how long he’ll be out.
“I’m not healthy,” Lee said in the Houston Chronicle. ”But I can walk better now and I can get a little more strength, so I guess it’s improving.”
Taking Lee’s spot on the roster and at first base is Brett Wallace, who had a couple hits and scored a run in his first start of the season Sunday. Wallace batted .265/.327/.476 with 10 homers and 37 RBI over 202 plate appearances for Triple-A Oklahoma City prior to his call-up, and the ‘Stros got him while he’s hot, as he had gone deep three times in his last four games, which included a grand slam Saturday. The former top prospect is worth scooping up in NL-only formats.
National League Quick Hits: Aramis Ramirez (quad) sat out Sunday’s game after straining his left quad Saturday. At this point, there’s been no indication that it’s serious, but you might want to have an alternative at third base just in case … Jon Niese struck out a career-high 10 batters in Sunday’s win over the Cardinals, but he also dealt with a rapid heartbeat and dizziness during the outing. Niese also dealt with the issue last year. He’ll be re-evaluated Monday, but the Mets don’t anticipate any problems … Huston Street (lat) made a second rehab appearance Sunday and appears set to return from the DL Tuesday, sending Dale Thayer back to a setup role … Ryan Braun didn’t start for a second straight game Sunday with Achilles and hip injuries. He appeared as a pinch-hitter, though, and is likely to return to the lineup Tuesday … Juan Nicasio has landed on the DL with a knee injury, and it’s not clear at this point how long he’ll be out. Guillermo Moscoso will replace him in the rotation … Brian McCann didn’t play Sunday after taking a pitch off his knee Saturday, but he hopes to be back in there Tuesday … Giants manager Bruce Bochy plans on giving more consistent playing time to Brandon Belt. Belt has struggled so far this season, but regular at-bats should certainly help … Jason Marquis is likely to join the Padres rotation this weekend after making one start in the minors. He’s undesirable for fantasy purposes, but we could see him being passable at home … Chris Young will make the start for the Mets Tuesday. It will be his first in the big leagues since May 1 of last season and just his ninth start since 2010.
American League Quick Hits: Felix Hernandez is a question mark for his next start due to a sore back. He’ll throw a bullpen session Monday before the Mariners determine his status for Wednesday … Dustin Pedroia (thumb) took two successful rounds of batting practice Saturday and plans to return to the lineup Tuesday. He’ll wear a brace on his injured thumb, but the Red Sox don’t think it will hinder him … Phil Hughes tossed the first complete game of his career in Sunday’s win over the Tigers. Though he was knocked around in his previous outing, he’s pitched much better of late and is looking like a solid mixed league play … Albert Pujols will move over to third base this weekend during interleague play at NL parks, allowing Kendrys Morales to slide in at first base … Carl Pavano will undergo an MRI Monday, but the Twins are already resigned to the fact that he’ll need time on the disabled list. Jeff Manship will take his spot in the rotation … Carlos Santana (concussion) is expected to be activated from the disabled list Tuesday after going through drills Saturday with no issues … John Danks (shoulder) has felt good during a couple bullpen sessions but is still expected to require a rehab start. He figures to rejoin the White Sox rotation next week … Andy Dirks has landed on the DL with an Achilles injury. It’s not clear how long he’ll be out, but Delmon Young will be the Tigers’ DH and Don Kelly will handle left field in the meantime … Joe Mauer left Sunday’s game with a mild sprain of his right thumb, but it’s not considered to be a big deal … Edwin Encarnacion left Sunday’s game after being hit on the right hand by a pitch, but X-rays came back negative, and he’s considered day-to-day.