Baseball's back! Check in periodically for news you can use from around spring training.
IKE TAKES A HIKE WEARING BOOT: Sidelined with a calf strain that has prevented him from playing for at least a week, New York Mets slugger Ike Davis has been fitted with a walking boot on his right foot. Davis has not gotten an MRI yet, ESPN New York reports, but he expects to soon. Davis also says he expects to be ready for opening day in three weeks. If he's not Lucas Duda and Josh Satin probably will platoon at first base. Duda, though, is nursing a hamstring injury and won't return to the lineup until the weekend at the soonest, reports Kristie Ackert of the New York Daily News. And the Twitter says John Olerud is available.
RED SOX SET STARTING ROTATION: At least for now, manager John Farrell has the Boston Red Sox's starting rotation in his preferred order to start the regular season. WEEI in Boston and others report that the order will be: 1. Jon Lester, 2. John Lackey, 3. Felix Doubront, 4. Jake Peavy, 5. Clay Buchholz. This order gives Buchholz a little extra time to get ready while also creating a matchup advantage with other team's fifth starters. Being third in the rotation means Doubront (a lefty) will pitch against the Orioles and Rays — against whom the Red Sox think he'll have an advantage. Doubront also has allowed three hits in six innings with six strikeouts this spring.
KRIS MEDLEN: Grabbed his elbow in the fourth inning Sunday and left the game with a right forearm strain. Odious and ominous but the Atlanta Braves seem cautiously optimistic he'll be OK — at least as it relates to what would be a catastrophic elbow injury. He had Tommy John surgery in 2010. As MLB.com reports, Medlen has a 2.47 ERA in 43 starts since July 2012, when he became a mainstay in the rotation. In other Braves starters news, they're not sure if Mike Minor will be ready to start the season or not after having urinary tract surgery in the offseason. Minor has yet to face live hitters this spring after feeling shoulder soreness. "It'll be close," manager Fredi Gonzalez was quoted as saying in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
ERVIN SANTANA: Has not signed yet. But the Twins have swooped in with a three-year offer. Santana has said he wants only one-year offers at this point. Jon Morosi of Fox Sports says that the Blue Jays, believed by many to be frontrunners, aren't necessarily locks to get him.
MATT HARVEY: The Mets don't want him to get too disappointed if he isn't able to make a start in 2014, as he hopes, after rehabbing from Tommy John elbow ligament replacement surgery. So they're allowing him no one-on-one interviews, Kevin Kernan of the New York Post reports.
When I saw Harvey in the clubhouse Sunday I said to him, “So you’ve been shut down verbally, too.’’
He smiled and said, “Apparently.’’
It’s not easy to silence a strong personality.
In reference to a “Noah (Syndergaard) Day’’ tweet on Saturday, Harvey tweeted out: “2014 Harvey day will happen.’’
It was just his way to let the world know Harvey Day this season remains a strong possibility in his mind.
The tweet was later deleted.
This is what the baseball field at the Sydney Cricket Ground looks like for the Dodgers and Diamondbacks:
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