NL East Report: Stanton Hurt, Maholm’s Scoreless Streak, Halladay Rebounds
Team News and Notes
Atlanta Braves (12-1)
The Braves continue to plow over any team in their way, as they are thoroughly dominating their opponents and remain in first place in the NL East. The Braves tomahawked the reigning NL East champs in Washington this past weekend, with a clean sweep of their three game series, while outscoring them to the tune of 18-4. Justin Upton continues to lead the club in many of the major offensive categories, batting .340/.404/.900 with eight homers, 12 RBI, and 13 runs scored. On the mound, Paul Maholm has surprised everyone with his incredible start to the season, as he now has run his scoreless streak to 20.1 innings with a record of 3-0. Atlanta was 7-0 this past week, and is currently riding a 10-game winning streak. .
Washington Nationals (8-6)
With a team of budding young stars, such as Bryce Harper and Stephen Strasburg, Jordan Zimmerman usually flies under the radar. So far Zimmerman has been the Nats best pitcher, with a record of 3-0, a 2.45 ERA, and one complete game. Rafael Soriano may be a lock for 40 saves this year, as he already has nailed down five just two weeks into the season. Jayson Werth is hot to start the year batting .309/.333/.491 with three home runs and eight RBI. Harper holds the team lead in home runs with five.
Philadelphia Phillies (6-7)
Roy Halladay rebounded from two awful outings to start the year, and tossed eight innings of one-run ball in Sunday’s 2-1 win over the Marlins. It was a step in the right direction, but it was still the Marlins, and they did not have Giancarlo Stanton in the lineup. Cliff Lee stayed hot to start to the year holding a current ERA of 1.52 through three starts. Cole Hamels fared much better in his third start, going six innings and giving up just one earned run. On offense, Chase Utley is batting .294/.339/.588 as he continues his resurgence. He leads the Phillies in home runs with three and RBI with 12.
Miami Marlins (3-11)
Marlins young prodigy Jose Fernandez remains the lone bright spot in an otherwise dismal start the 2013 season. Fernandez followed up his five inning nine strikeout debut with a six scoreless innings in his second outing, and currently owns a 0.82 ERA. The Marlins offense has sputtered to begin the season, and to date, only have two home runs as a team. The injury to Giancarlo Stanton‘s left shoulder has kept him out of the lineup since last Wednesday, although batting .167/.342/.233 before the injury wasn’t helping matters much.
Nationals: Wilson Ramos landed on the DL on April 14 due to a let hamstring strain. He is expected to return when he is eligible to come off at the end of the month. Reliever Christian Garcia is on the DL with partial tear in his forearm tendon.
Braves: Brian McCann (offseason shoulder surgery) was supposed to begin catching in extended spring training games on Wednesday or Thursday, and possibly start a rehab stint next week. However, the veteran backstop felt some tenderness in his wrist and will now be having an MRI instead. Jonny Venters (elbow) remains shut down for four weeks as of April 2, and may be out for the first two months. Brandon Beachy (Tommy John surgery) is still recovering and could return by midseason. Freddie Freeman who was placed on the DL with a strained oblique on April 7, recently took pain free 30 swings and could possibly be due back when he is eligible.
Phillies: Delmon Young (ankle) is progressing nicely and may be able to start a rehab stint as early as next week. His May return remains on target.
Marlins: Giancarlo Stanton has been out since last Wednesday because of a left shoulder contusion. An MRI showed no structural damage, but he is still feeling discomfort, and remains day-to-day and will test his shoulder on Tuesday. Casey Kotchman was placed on the DL, retroactive to April 4, with a strained hamstring. Logan Morrison is currently on the 60-day DL, as he recovers from a torn patella tendon that required surgery last September. Henderson Alvarez and Nathan Eovaldi are both on the DL with right shoulder inflammation. Alvarez threw a 15-pitch bullpen session on April 13, and could return by early May, while Eovaldi remains out indefinitely.
Upcoming Schedules (4/8-4/14)
Nationals: (@MIA, 4/6-4/17), (@NYM, 4/19-4/21)
Braves: (KC, 4/16-4/117), (@PIT, 4/18-4/21)
Phillies: (@CIN, 4/15-4/17), (STL, 4/18-4/21)
Marlins: (WSH, 4/16-4-17) (@CIN, 4/18-4/21)
Carlos Ruiz: The Phillies backstop has 12 games remaining to serve his 25-game suspension.
About the Author: Dan Valis
I am a staff writer for Mets Merized Online. I am a Mets team analyst with a focus on the minor league system, as well as the major league club. I am a lifelong New Yorker who was born and raised to be a Mets fan. The ups and downs of being a Mets fan is what makes following this team so much fun, but at times so frustrating. You can follow me on Twitter @BgAppleMetsTalk.
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