Rockpile, 4/18: Michael Cuddyer dinged up, Justin Morneau producing

Denis Poroy

Your daily link roundup.

Rockies strike late to make winner of Morales - MLB.com

Thomas Harding dissects last night's game. It was an encouraging win that salvaged a split against the Padres, with a number of encouraging indicators: Justin Morneau's bat, Morales' arm, and solid bullpen work.

Cuddyer day to day with hamstring injury - MLB.com

When Michael Cuddyer grabbed his hamstring after busting it up the line on a ground out, Rockies fans the world over held their collective breath. Even Drew Goodman groaned audibly. Luckily, they're describing it as more of a cramp than a strain, and think Cuddyer will only miss a game or two. Whew. The pitching staff has already been decimated, we don't need the injury bug to start hitting position players.

Justin Morneau steps up early for Rockies - Denver Post

Patrick Saunders has notes on Morneau, the Rockies scouting Joel Hanrahan, and Brett Anderson's finger surgery. More on Morneau later. STAY TUNED.

Prospect watch: McMahon, Rondon, and Garcia - Fangraphs

"94...and it's over his head." Nathaniel Stoltz has nothing but praise for Rockies farm hand Ryan McMahon, third baseman in Low-A. McMahon has already crushed six homers and has nearly as many walks as strikeouts. The McMan is still two years away, at minimum, but he's generating tons of buzz this year.

Are the Dodgers targeting pitchers who rake - Beyond the Box Score

It has long been a pet theory of mine that the last great market inefficiency in National League baseball is the 9th spot in the lineup. If you could somehow assemble a pitching staff that could not only throw the ball but hit a little bit, you could rack up at least a could dozen more runs over the course of the season...but it seems that the position has become too specialized to ever have competent hitters.

Except that the Dodgers seem to have collected guys who can handle the bat. Kershaw, Greinke, and Ryu all know what they're doing at the plate. Instead of being easy outs and shortening up innings, they hang tough. It's interesting.

I wish the NL would just add the Designated Hitter.

No one walks off the island - ESPN

Highly recommended that you carve out a chunk of time to read this piece by Scott Eden about Yasiel Puig and the trials of escaping Cuba to play baseball. It's a journey that can at any moment lead to prison, torture, maiming, or death, and you have to trust the least trustworthy men in the world to reach the USA. The story makes Puig's on-field antics look trivial in comparison. Related...

Mattingly concerned about Puig saga - ESPN

Those untrustworthy men Puig relied upon are not fully in his past; the outfielder has apparently received death threats related to outstanding debts. Not shockingly, this is a concern to Dodgers management. Man, you can't make this stuff up.

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