Hendricks, now with back-to-back Opening Day nods and a career 3.12 ERA has become the poster child of command/control pitchers in new-age baseball. He’s been invaluably consistent for the Cubs over the past five years. In 2016 – when Arrieta took the ball on Opening Day – Hendricks had the best ERA in MLB (2.13).
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Team Face Masks
A power hitter who slammed 31 homers at Triple A in 2019 before signing a minor league deal with the Red Sox this winter, Gettys needs to limit his strikeouts to have any chance of reaching the big leagues. He has struck out at least 160 times in his last three minor-league seasons, with a high of 191 in 2017.
The 22-year-old has established himself as a natural-looking second baseman, adding to his experience at third base. Being a multi-positional player boosts Paredes' chances of traveling to Detroit when camp concludes, despite recent offensive woes.
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Clippard was injured while pitching against the Milwaukee Brewers on Friday in Phoenix. He gave up seven earned runs without retiring a batter and was struggling with his command and velocity before eventually motioning for manager Torey Lovullo to take him out of the game.
Betts vs. Fernando Tatis for NL MVP will be a fun subplot to the Dodgers-Padres division race. And personally, give me the guy who has finished in the top 10 for MVP voting for the past five years and is only entering his age-28 season. He’s so unassailably awesome that even a short, slightly below-optimal 2020 campaign presented enough opportunity to make a mini-meme out of the Red Sox decision to deal him to the best team in baseball where he’ll get plenty of attention in high-stakes games. I don’t think I’m going too far out on a limb to predict that Betts highlights will once again fill your Twitter feed alongside incredulity that anyone would ever trade him. And that the sum of those web gems will be an MVP-worthy season.