Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Will Middlebrooks, Andrew Cashner Power Padres; Jordany Valdespin, Reid Brignac Wreck Mets in Marlin Win

Players of the Day for Monday, March 9, 2015

Grapefruit League

Before some Mets' batters had even gotten to the plate, the Marlins had already put up nine runs on their NL East foes, scoring six in the second and three more in the third inning. The players doing the bulk of the damage were fresh faces on the Miami roster, Jordany Valdespin and Reid Brignac.

Valdespin, who started with the Mets and played in 54 games for the Marlins last season, singled and tripled in four at-bats, driving in three runs and scoring twice. Brignac, who spent last season in Philadelphia, went 3-for-4 (all singles) also driving in three and scoring twice.

When it was all said and done, the Marlins pasted the Mets, 13-2, improving to 3-2 for the Spring while dropping the Mets to a 3-4 mark.

Cactus League

Will Middlebrooks socked a three-run, second inning homer in support of three innings of no-hit ball from Andrew Cashner as the San Diego Padres evened their record at 3-3 and sent the Cubs to their fifth straight defeat of the spring without a win with a 6-3 victory.

Cashner blanked the punchless Cubs over the first three innings, walking one, while striking out a trio. After going 10-9 in 2013 with the Padres, Cashner dipped to a 5-7 mark over 19 starts in 2014, though his ERA dropped to a very respectable 2.55. He's expected to remain in the San Diego starting rotation.

Middlebrooks, who spent the last three seasons playing part-time for the Boston Red Sox, is looking to catch on as the regular third baseman with the Padres and he's off to a good start with a .400 batting average in two games. The Texas native needs to work on his plate demeanor, as his batting average has gone from .288 in 2012, to .227 in 2013, to a scary .191 last season.

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