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Matt Wieters sports the tools of ignorance
It had been a while since Matt Wieters last put the gear on: May 4th of last year, to be exact, when his elbow began to bark. The 28-year-old was eventually diagnosed with a torn ulnar collateral ligament that required Tommy John surgery, going on the shelf May 10th and staying there for the rest of the season.

Wieters came to camp this year nearly back at full strength, but he minimized his throwing during the first few weeks. That meant serving as the Orioles’ designated hitter in Grapefruit League play. And while the club couldn’t have been happy with Wieters’ 0-for-20 effort at the plate entering Tuesday, it sure was glad to have him catching again.

According to MLB.com’s Brittany Ghiroli, a weekend evaluation led manager Buck Showalter and his staff to believe that Wieters could handle the rigors of 5-7 innings in the squat. The Georgia Tech product’s throws down to second had begun to approximate his pre-surgery time, which was the indication Baltimore needed to see before weaning Wieters of DH duty.

Cubs hope Kris Bryant can return to hot corner soon
Spring training at Sloan Park in Mesa, Arizona, has been the Kris Bryant show. Sensing an opportunity to impress the brass, the 23-year-old raked to the tune of 10 hits in 23 at-bats before Tuesday’s contest, with eight of those knocks netting extra bases and six clearing a fence. Bryant’s half-dozen bombs were double the next-highest total on the Cubs, which belonged to Matt Szczur.

The only thing slowing Bryant down this spring is a touch of shoulder fatigue, which has kept him from playing third base. Fortunately, skipper Joe Maddon told reporters, including USA Today’s Bob Nightengale, that there’s no underlying injury. Bryant will continue his assault on Cactus League pitching and return to the hot corner by Thursday or Friday.

Ranked second on the Cubs’ top 10 list, trailing only shortstop Addison Russell, Bryant could be in the majors before the end of April, once the Cubs hold back his service-time clock enough to delay his free agency by a year. There’s undisputed All-Star upside here, and it shouldn’t take long for Bryant to unseat Mike Olt for the everyday job at third.

After a workout to test his arm on Tuesday, Bryant said he’d be active if the regular season were underway.

Alex Rodriguez might stick to third base
Meanwhile, at Yankees camp, manager Joe Girardi mentioned to reporters earlier this spring that he might give Alex Rodriguez a look at first base. The idea would’ve been to create another way to get Rodriguez’ bat into the lineup versus left-handed starters and to give the Bombers another backup option to the fragile Mark Teixeira. But Girardi has yet to deploy the 39-year-old across the horn from his usual position, and he might not do so after all.

Speaking with reporters on Tuesday, Girardi indicated that he’s comfortable with Garrett Jones as his reserve first sacker. That makes sense, because the pull-hitting Jones could take aim at Yankee Stadium’s short porch frequently enough to be a solid backup. The 33-year-old is best relegated to a platoon role, having posted a .272 True Average versus righties and a .202 mark against southpaws in 2014, splits that are in line with his career norms.

Girardi can limit Jones’ exposure to left-handers as long as Teixeira is healthy, but doing so could be more challenging if the switch-hitting regular requires a stint on the DL. That’s where Rodriguez might come into play in a platoon arrangement, though the Yankees appear comfortable with the idea of crossing that bridge when they come to it.

Unless Girardi’s plans change in the next couple of weeks, Rodriguez will see the bulk of his time at third base in place of Chase Headley and at designated hitter, a job he’ll have to share with Carlos Beltran, Jones, and Chris Young.

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jfranco77
3/18
Well, even though it wouldn't be ideal defensively, Girardi could move Headley to 1B and play A-Rod at 3B against lefties.
jfranco77
3/18
As a follow-up, apparently Wieters is having elbow tendinitis and is back to NOT catching.

http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/orioles/blog/bal-one-day-after-catching-return-orioles-catcher-matt-wieters-shut-down-with-elbow-tendinitis-20150318-story.html
timber
3/18
That doesn't mean he can't still squat!