The Taylor Family Sickness is apparently a city-wide sickness (well, at least school-wide), because the kiddos’ school is closed today. I’ll do my best to write well in between screaming fits, diaper changes, and booger wipes. Fortunately, The Mother is coming to help me, God bless her. Maybe you won’t notice a thing. We’ll see.
- Although everyone remains aboard the Arodys Vizcaino hype train, manager Rick Renteria is making sure to put things in the proper perspective. Having missed the last two years, the 23-year-old Vizcaino still needs to accomplish a lot of things before he’s ready for Major League action. RR tells CSN that Vizcaino has to do things like pitching on back-to-back days, getting warmed up and sitting back down, and getting back up again, etc. That’s the kind of thing he’d have to do be doing without any reservations in order to be in the big league pen, which is among the many reasons I still don’t think Vizcaino breaks camp with the Cubs. In the minors, his innings and appearances can still be managed. Can you imagine the tumult if Vizcaino is clearly the best setup option after a few strong April outings in Chicago, and then is used back-to-back days … and his elbow pops again? You can’t control that kind of thing, but you can certainly try to put a valuable piece like Vizcaino in the best possible position to succeed long-term. Throwing him out there after missing two years and using him like a true setup man could be disastrous. Tentatively, it sounds like RR is setting folks up for the eventual decision to option Vizcaino to the minors to start the year.
- Cubs backup catcher George Kottaras says he can see the improvement in Welington Castillo as a backstop in the years he’s observed him as an opponent, and now as a teammate. Pitching coach Chris Bosio says that Castillo has improved as much year to year as any catcher he’s seen in his 32 years of baseball.
- Praise for Kyle Hendricks from his manager to his pitching coordinator to his parents.
- Jesse Rogers takes on a few of the Spring’s storylines, including the plan for Mike Olt.
- The CCO has some great Spring Training videos.
- The Marlins were unhappy that the Red Sox didn’t send a big league-caliber lineup over for a Spring game last week and made a little fuss about it, saying they would be contacting the league office. How did Red Sox owner John Henry respond? By tweeting, “They should apologize for their regular season lineup.” Wicked burn, bro.
- Your prospect porn of the day:
I didn't realize Javier Baez swung so hard. I didn't realize anyone swung so hard.
— Tim Brown (@TBrownYahoo) March 9, 2014
The sound of the ball off Baez's bat is aural pornography
— Sahadev Sharma (@sahadevsharma) March 9, 2014