Redskins

Brewers going with young arms in their rotation

Brewers going with young arms in their rotation

MILWAUKEE (AP) Yovani Gallardo is expected to be the ace of the Milwaukee Brewers' rotation.

After that, the team faces some question marks.

Manager Ron Roenicke expects right-hander Marco Estrada to fill a spot. If Chris Narveson is recovered from shoulder surgery that limited him to just two starts a year ago, he'll be back in the rotation.

Gallardo made 33 starts in 2012, posting a 16-9 record and 3.66 ERA while striking out 204.

Prospects will compete for the final rotation spots.

Mike Fiers has the most big league experience of the group, starting 22 games last season while posting a 9-10 record and a 3.74 ERA.

Former No. 1 draft pick Mark Rogers, who has had injury issues, was 6-6 with a 4.72 ERA in 18 starts with Triple-A Nashville and 3-1 with a 3.92 ERA in seven starts with the Brewers before he was shut down for the season.

After a slow start with Nashville, Wily Peralta made five starts late in the season with the Brewers and went 2-1 with a 2.48 ERA.

``Peralta has a huge upside,'' Roenicke said. ``If he pitches like he did a few of those games last year, he's got a huge upside.''

Milwaukee will also have depth in the minor leagues with Tyler Thornurg and Hiram Burgos.

Thornburg was Milwaukee's third-round draft choice in 2010 and has moved quickly through the system. He went 10-4 last year between Double-A Huntsville and Nashville and made a few appearances with Milwaukee during the season.

Burgos was the organization's minor league pitcher of the year last season, going 10-4 with a 1.95 ERA in 28 games with Nashville, Huntsville and Class A Brevard County, striking out 153 batters and walking just 49.

``The nice thing is we don't have just three guys for those three spots,'' Roenicke said. ``We've got two or three other guys we feel comfortable can do it. Going into it knowing that it's not just these three guys and you have to do it all year, we don't have to do that. We've got four guys we know can pitch in the big leagues for three spots.''

The Brewers are going with youth after trading Zack Greinke to the Los Angeles Angels for prospects last season.

``I'm not saying it's a gamble,'' general manager Doug Melvin said. ``When I wake up every morning, it's a gamble. But we felt this was the time and opportunity to give them the ball. They all pitched very well. We like the ballclub. There were a lot of positives that took place in August and September of last season.''

Milwaukee looked for pitching help during free agency, showing interest in right-hander Ryan Dempster but the Brewers weren't willing to commit to a three-year contract and Dempster signed with Boston. Other candidates came with prices deemed a little too high, leading the Brewers to stick with what they have.

The Brewers' payroll was $101 million at the start of 2012 but the team decided to cut costs this year, leaving some wiggle room to add players as the season goes on.

``We saw last year with our ability to get back into the playoff race with two (wild cards), you can be seven or 10 games out at midseason and still have a shot,'' Brewers owner Mark Attanasio said.

``Now we are in position this year, even if we are back seven, eight, nine or 10 games, to add at midseason given where we have our payroll if we have the right kind of player come up depending how we see the division playing out at that time.''

Can a group of unheralded pitchers keep pace with the Cincinnati Reds and St. Louis Cardinals in the NL Central?

Melvin certainly thinks so.

The influx of young talent played a big part as the Brewers surged back into contention in 2012, finishing the season with a 27-13 record and going from 12 games under .500 to wild-card contention in the season's final weeks.

``We were encouraged by their performance last August and September,'' Melvin said. ``They performed well enough to give us confidence. The challenge is doing it over the course of the marathon season.''

Melvin and the Brewers also had to rework the bullpen over the winter.

Closer John Axford returns in 2013, after losing then regaining the ninth-inning role and finishing strong down the stretch. Midseason call-up Jim Henderson will open the season as the setup man, Kameron Loe, Manny Parra, Francisco Rodriguez left.

The bullpen was a big factor in the Brewers missing the playoffs as they led the majors with 29 blown saves. To shore up the bullpen, Melvin signed left-handers Tom Gorzelanny and Mike Gonzalez from Washington and traded for Tampa Bay's Burke Badenhop.

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2019 NFL Draft: Best remaining players entering Day 2; Third round targets for Redskins

2019 NFL Draft: Best remaining players entering Day 2; Third round targets for Redskins

Good news: The Redskins ended the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft with quarterback Dwayne Haskins and edge rusher Montez Sweat.

Related news: The Redskins no longer own a second-round pick. 

Nobody is complaining.

The NFL world returns Friday for Day 2. Since Washington dealt the 46th overall selection to the Indianapolis Colts along with a 2020 second for Sweat, it won’t be on the clock without another trade until the first of two third-round choices.

Again, no angry mobs are forming. The Redskins addressed two key needs. Yes, they have several more remaining. The same applies to every team to varying degrees.

Here’s a look at the best players remaining and names to watch for Washington in the third.

Day 2 Best Available

Drew Lock, QB, Missouri – So much for Drew being a round one lock. He was the most polarizing of the top four passing prospects based on pre-draft conversations with league sources. Somebody (Raiders?) will jump on the upside early in the second. Lock finished with 72 touchdown passes to 21 interceptions over his final two seasons. 

Byron Murphy, CB, Washington/Greedy Williams, CB, LSU/ Rock Ya-Sin, CB, Temple – The cornerback run never happened with only Georgia’s DeAndre Baker hearing his name called Friday. Williams owns the most public hype of these three thanks to sub 4.4 40-time and strong cover skills, but his stock plummeted throughout draft season in part because of his limited interest in tackling. Don’t be surprised if he’s third off the board among this trio. 

Cody Ford, G, Oklahoma – Arguably, the most surprising slider based on the foundational aspect of offensive linemen and Ford’s mauling nature. One source told NBCSW pre-draft that the Vikings dropped Ford after their meeting. Perhaps other teams struggled to believe in the college tackle in the first. 

Jawaan Taylor, T, Florida -- Wild day for Taylor, who entered the draft a projected top 10 selection, but several injury and weight red flags popped up in recent days. Seeing as Jacksonville at 7 made for a popular mock selection, maybe the Jaguars circle back on Day 2.

A.J. Brown, WR, Mississippi/D.K. Metcalf, WR, Mississippi -- Two receivers went in the first round. Some are surely shocked the Adonis-like Metcalf fell, but there are concerns about his agility and limited production especially compared to his talented college teammate. He also is 6-foot-3 and runs a 4.33 40-time. Brown had 85 receptions last season. One scout told NBCSW he believes Brown is the better of the two. 

Erik McCoy, C, Texas A&M/Dalton Risner, T, Kansas State – Fine, neither went in the first, but these two versatile linemen remain immediate starters for their yet-to-be-determined NFL team. The athletic and powerful Risner, a three-year starter and 2018 All-American, could play three positions. 

Irv Smith, TE, Alabama – Smith rated just behind the two Iowa tight ends that went in the first. Going with the 6-foot-2 target is more of an upside play, but he did average 16 yards per catch during his junior season with the Crimson Tide. 

Jaylon Ferguson, DE, La. Tech – The pass rusher received some first-round buzz. Don’t be surprised if a team trades up for the edge rusher who had 17.5 sacks and 65 tackles last season. For now… 

Others: Juan Thornhill, CB, Virginia; Nassir Adderley, S, Delaware; J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, WR, Stanford; Parris Campbell, WR, Ohio State; Will Grier, QB, West Virginia; Justin Layne, CB, Michigan State; Dre'Mont Jones, DE/DT, Ohio State; Chase Winovich, DE, Michigan; Deebo Samuel, WR, South Carolina; Taylor Rapp, SS, Washington; Miles Sanders, RB, Penn State; David Long, CB, Michigan.

Third round

The Redskins enter Friday with the 77th and 97th selections and clear needs at wide receiver, free safety, left guard, tight end and inside linebacker.

Wide receiver: Riley Ridley, Georgia; Kelvin Harmon, NC State – Patience pays off and made easier considering the impressive Day 2 positional depth. Both Ridley and Harmon offer 6-foot-2 size, which the roster needs. Harmon, a three-year starter brings strong hands and a physical presence.

Tight end: Jace Sternberger, Texas A&M; Kahale Warring, San Diego State -- Several league sources believed the Redskins entered the draft focused on adding tight end help and not just mere depth. Head coach Jay Gruden said as much this off-season. Warring, a former basketball and water polo player visited Ashburn, pre-draft. The interest isn’t about the stats, but the tape. One scout cited the 6-foot-5 Warring as the player in this class he wanted on his team most regardless of round.

Guard: Conor McGovern, Penn State; Dru Samia, G, Oklahoma – Redskins senior VP of Player Personnel said Monday former Giants bust Ereck Flowers’ evolution from tackle to guard could earn him the starting spot next to Trent Williams. Legit hope or not, the Redskins must add more help somewhere in the draft. The 308-pound McGovern would immediately boost the run blocking.

Inside linebacker: Mack Wilson, Alabama; Bobby Okereke, Stanford – The Redskins have questions all over the place with this unit, including trusting Reuben Foster to make it through a season without incident. The other projected starter, Mason Foster, becomes a free agent in 2020. Wilson would provide the defense with a stout tackler – and yet another Alabama defender.

Safety: Deionte Thompson, Alabama; Amani Hooker, Iowa – Adding Landon Collins should change plenty in the secondary, but the defense lacks a true centerfielder. Injuries and late-season struggles dropped Thompson possibly into the third, but he would be a strong replacement option for fellow Crimson Tide safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix. 

Others: Julian Love, CB, Notre Dame; Sean Bunting, CB, Central Michigan; Darrell Henderson, RB, Memphis; Oshane Ximines, DE, Old Dominion; Michael Jordan, C, Ohio State; Marvell Tell, USC

Not included: Any quarterback. You know why. 

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Baltimore Orioles Roundup: Reeling O's set for 3-game weekend set in Minnesota

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Baltimore Orioles Roundup: Reeling O's set for 3-game weekend set in Minnesota

The Baltimore Orioles (10-16) hit the road for Minnesota this weekend. Here's your news and notes ahead of the 3-game set. 

PLAYER NOTES:

ORIOLES:

Right fielder Steve Wilkerson hit his first MLB home Wednesday night, a solo shot to put Baltimore up 4-1. It proved to be the deciding run, as the White Sox scored only two more runs in the game. 

John Means earned the win on his 25th birthday Wednesday, hurling five innings and allowing just one run on four hits and a walk, striking out six. Means is now 3-2 on the season. 

Chris Davis missed out on Wednesday's win due to a personal matter. After a historically cold start, Davis is hitting .360 in his last nine games. 

A pair of Orioles fans, Joe and Katie Demski, got married in their O's jerseys on Wednesday. Congrats to the lovely couple. 

TWINS:

Eddie Rosario leads the major leagues with 10 home runs and is tied for third with 13 outfield assists defensively. His eight long-balls through 17 games marked the most in Twins history since Tony Oliva (1966, seven). 

One of the hottest hitters in Major League Baseball is 25-year-old Jorge Polanco. Not only did the shortstop hit for the cycle already, but he's batting a cool .366 and took Justin Verlander deep recently. 

INJURIES:

RP Richard Bleier: Shoulder, 10-Day IL

SP Nate Karns: Arm, 10-Day IL

DH Mark Trumbo: Knee, 60-Day IL

COMING UP:

Saturday 4/27: Orioles @ Twins, 2:10 p.m., Target Field

Sunday 4/28: Orioles @ Twins, 2:10 p.m., Target Field

Monday, 4/29: Orioles @ White Sox, 8:10 p.m., Comiskey Park 

Source: Rotoworld

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