Anthony Castrovince has been a reporter for MLB.com since 2004.
|Mike Moustakas has enjoyed a scorching spring, but Spring Training numbers tend to be inflated. What's important, therefore, is to hone in on what's real. And what's real for the Royals right now is a true sense of stability in the lineup, a more intellectual approach at the plate and the respect their multidimensional pursuit of runs has earned from the opposition.
More»Mike Moustakas talks with Dan Plesac from Royals camp|
|Fate is fate and facts are facts. Choo's ability to read and see pitches -- working counts and drawing walks and exhausting the opposition -- has made him the ideal leadoff option in a game with an increasing appreciation for on-base percentage.
More»Shin-Soo Choo discusses his new team with Dan Plesac|
|This was Sonny Gray's third start in his first spring as a so-called established Major Leaguer, and he's still feeling his way through it. All this talk -- about his bouts with Justin Verlander last October, about his candidacy for the Opening Day nod, about his status as one of the game's rising stars -- can be a little overwhelming.
More» Gray looking to build on solid rookie season|
|Maybe Barry Bonds' stint as a guest instructor in Giants camp will serve as some small reminder of the unique talent that existed beyond the hints and shouts and court dates and public persecution and, yes, beyond the general jerkiness, too.
More»Bonds on returning to Spring Training as a mentor|
|For skippers in their first seasons at the helm, the procedure of determining what to challenge and when to challenge has been yet another challenge in the long list of areas in which these leaders of men are attempting to develop and establish their managerial personalities.
More» Sandberg on expanded replay, Phils' offense|
|You'd be hard-pressed to find a single analysis of the D-backs' trade for Mark Trumbo that doesn't somehow incorporate the words "lineup protection" in it. The problem, though, with this assumption is twofold: 1. The concept of "lineup construction" is statistically dubious to begin with, and 2. manager Kirk Gibson seems to have no plans to pair Trumbo and Paul Goldschmidt, anyway.
More» Trumbo drives in Goldschmidt in the fourth|
|On the Angels, Albert Pujols and Mike Trout work in tandem. The veteran is a daily, present reminder to Trout of the commitment level it takes to maintain annual MVP-type production, and the young superstar serves as a daily, present reminder of the value of youthful exuberance.
More»Angels looking for long-term deal for Trout|
|Here are the "make-or-break" seasons that are on the horizon in the American League, because every team has at least one player with a lot on the line, either because of what 2014 will mean for his future or what his performance will mean for his team's bottom line.
More» CC pitches two scoreless in spring debut|
|Brandon Phillips has gone "media mute" again here in Reds camp. Only this time, it's a selective form of media muteness. He's not talking to the Cincinnati beat reporters, the guys around him essentially on a daily basis.
More» Phillips' RBI tally masks eroding skill set|
|Here are 30 "make-or-break" seasons that are on the horizon. One for every team, because every team has at least one player with a lot on the line, either because of what 2014 will mean for his future or what his performance will mean for his team's bottom line.
More» Upton looks to regain form as dual threat|
|They call this guy "Nasty Masty" because of the weaponry he brings to the mound, fastballs and sliders flinging out of the hand attached to that 6-foot-6, 250-pound frame. Off the mound, as we've learned, Justin Masterson is anything but nasty. It should be no surprise, then, that he is going about the sometimes brutal business side of the game in such a genial manner.
More» Masterson looks to become No. 1 option|
|Joe Maddon may be the modern pioneer of the defensive shift, but the Rays no longer retain an edge in this particular defensive department. If anything, their shifting strategy is the new norm.
|You could feel it again, in that fleeting moment when a red-clad crowd went crazy during lineup introductions, celebrating a Wild Card-winning Indians club that unexpectedly brought playoff baseball back to Cleveland.
More»Hart on the Indians' fanbase throughout the years|
|On the heels of a winter that saw the Mets commit more than three times as much money to three free agents than they had spent in the previous three offseasons combined, the club will rely on veterans and the potential of young starters.
More»Wheeler wants to start on Opening Day|
|The Cardinals got good news on Jaime Garcia on Wednesday, but they won't know how good until they see how his shoulder, which reportedly has no structural damage, responds to a cortisone injection to treat inflammation. But they are uniquely positioned to take a hiccup such as the Garcia news in stride.
More»Mozeliak, Matheny discuss Garcia's status|
|Success -- wild, enthralling, beard-bearing and city-strengthening success -- didn't alter the course of caution and strict sensibility by which the Boston Red Sox now operate. If anything, it only strengthened the organizational stance that this is not just a baseball team but a baseball business.
More»Browne on expectations for Bogaerts, Middlebrooks|
|The Rays were holding live batting-practice sessions Monday on the back fields of Charlotte Sports Park, a typical sight on a late-February morning in a Spring Training camp. What wasn't so typical was what was happening on the periphery.
More»Moore feels good about early progress at camp|
|Would a deal that marks brave new territory in terms of a guarantee to a 22-year-old be fair for Mike Trout and the Angels? Will the revamped Tigers be improved this season? MLB.com columnist Anthony Castrovince answers these questions and more in his Inbox.
More»Trout has his sights set on big 2014 season|
|Cliff Lee turned 35 last summer, but there's no regression in sight for the left-hander, who believes "age is just a number" -- and the Phillies need to follow that mantra in order to succeed.
More»Palmer chats with Lee about the Phils' expectations|
|All along this winter, the thought was that the Blue Jays, whose two protected first-round Draft picks put them in a solid spot to add a guy attached to compensation, were waiting in the wings, ready to pounce when the price is right. But as you might have noticed in today's game, the price is rarely right, in the old-fashioned sense.
More»Reyes on his health, expectations for Blue Jays|
|By Anthony Castrovince/MLB.com On Twitter: @Castrovince On the day Robinson Cano got $240 million from the Mariners and Curtis Granderson got $60 million from the Mets and Scott Feldman got $30 million from the Astros, Chris Antonetti met with reporters in the Terrace Club at Progressive Field to discussâ¦ uhâ¦ the chicken marsala lunch special? […] More»|
|By Anthony Castrovince/MLB.com On Twitter: @Castrovince NOTE: This post has been updated with news of the Indians coming to an agreement with David Murphy. A small sliver of insight into the Tribeâs offseason spending strategy rests in the simple fact that when Tim Hudson fielded final offers earlier this week, the Indians had made what […] More»|
|By Anthony Castrovince/MLB.com On Twitter: @Castrovince When it was over, and the sea of red had begun to disperse, revealing the undertow of green plastic seats, a few hundred fans remained near the home dugout, standing, applauding. This American League Wild Card game against the Tampa Bay Rays did not go to plan Wednesday night. […] More»|
|By Anthony Castrovince/MLB.com On Twitter: @Castrovince The last club Terry Francona managed went 7-20 in September to complete one of the great collapses in baseball history and end his otherwise successful tenure in Boston. This Tribe club managed by Francona went 21-6 in September to complete a stunning surge that, while undoubtedly schedule-aided, rejuvenated local […] More»|
|By Anthony Castrovince/MLB.com On Twitter: @Castrovince Totally did not see this coming. I was optimistic, but not this optimistic. I was a believer, but not this big a believer. I knew the Indians would be better this year, and not just because things couldnât have gotten much worse than the 2012 freefall. I knew an […] More»|
|By Anthony Castrovince/MLB.com On Twitter: @Castrovince Within a whisker of a postseason berth, the Indians are coming to the conclusion that they have no closer. Chris Perez is not a closer right now. With a 7.85 ERA, .350 average against and 1.116 OPS against in 18 1/3 innings over his last 19 appearances, heâs a […] More»|
|By Anthony Castrovince/MLB.com On Twitter: @Castrovince A Boston beat reporter got in touch with me the other day, because he has an AL Manager of the Year vote and he wanted to make sure he did his due diligence all the candidates, rather than just circling John Farrellâs name and being done with it. Heâs […] More»|
|By Anthony Castrovince/MLB.com On Twitter: @Castrovince Well, this figures, right? Ubaldo Jimenez arrives here as a would-be ace with so much wanted and expected from him. And for the better part of two calendar years, he stinks, quite frankly. In the 2011 playoff chase, when the Indians are desperately trying to keep pace with the […] More»|
|By Anthony Castrovince/MLB.com On Twitter: @Castrovince None of the individual narratives seem to do justice to how fun and frustrating and ecstatic and exasperating and inherently weird this Cleveland Indians season has been. The Indians return home Thursday for the final homestand of 2013. Theyâve got a remaining schedule â four against Houston, two against […] More»|
|By Anthony Castrovince/MLB.com On Twitter: @Castrovince Yan Gomes walked by, and an Indians official said, âThere goes our starting catcher.â Indeed, the transition is complete. Gomes has started at catcher in 22 of the Indiansâ last 36 games. Publicly, Terry Francona says what youâd expect him to say, but the proof is in the pudding […] More»|