First update of Spring …

There’s 91 days until Opening Night in Missoula …

Welcome to Spring … officially. Today is the first full day of the Spring Equinox. It’s also the first of two days when people will call in sick then miraculously recover and head out to their favorite food establishment with big screen TVs to watch March Madness. Don’t worry … we’re not saying a word.

Roster Moves:
The Baltimore Orioles have reassigned left-handed pitcher Daniel Schlereth (2008 Osprey) to minor-league camp. Schlereth struggled this spring, and will likely start the season at Triple-A Norfolk.

Catching up:
– More Oriole stuff related to former Osprey – Mike Belfiore (2009) has appeared in five Major League games this spring for the Orioles, going 1-0 with a 3.12 ERA. Bels managed to pitch around situations – his opponents batting average was .312 and posted a WHIP of 1.27 – but still managed to make an impression. Belfiore will likelystart the season at Triple-A Norfolk and working in the bullpen. He also is likely still doing well during pitchers’ BP – remember, Belfiore was a DH/1B for Boston College as well as the team’s closer for his last two seasons with the Eagles before the D-backs picked him in the 2009 MLB Draft.

Sergio Santos (2002) will pitch again for the Toronto Blue Jays on Friday against the Boston Red Sox. In five appearances, Santos has posted a 5.40 ERA, with a walk and five strikeouts. Santos, who missed most of the 2013 season due to an arm injury, has allowed a WHIP of 1.20 and opponents to hit ar a .250 clip. Santos will be used as a setup man and backup closer this season.

– Staying with the Jays, infielder Emilio Bonifacio (2003) is showing some pop in the bat while competing for the starting role at second base. Bonifacio, acquired in the Fire Sale trade with the Miami Marlins in the offseason, is hitting .326 with three doubles, a triple, two home runs and six RBIs, while going 7-for-7 in stolen bases. The one drawback could be his lack of reps at second base – remember, Miami used Bonifacio a lot in the outfield, as well as shortstop in a pinch, but “Bonny” prefers second base as his position of choice.

Pedro Ciriaco (2005) is hitting .333 with a triple, five RBIs and three stolen bases, but whether or not he is going to make the Boston Red Sox roster for Opening Day is still up in the air. Ciriaco – who can play three infield positions – is in a battle with Brock Holt for the utility infielder job. Ciriaco’s versatility, though, could land him on the Opening Day roster anyway. Oddly enough, former D-backs shortstop Stephen Drew – who is out with a concussion at the moment – could be the reason that Ciriaco ends up heading North for Opening Day.

– Another former Osprey who could be on the BoSox Opening Day roster is Lyle Overbay (1999), who could be platooning at DH until David Ortiz is healthy, as well as platoon at first base. Overbay is hitting .250 this spring in 15 games, with a double, two triples, seven RBIs and a .406 on-base percentage.

By the way … we will have updates coming directly from Arizona in the coming days. Be on the lookout for those soon!

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