Toronto, Houston, and Texas are first-second-third for the Cactus League title entering play on Saturday. That's probably a worthy consolation considering how last year's playoffs went, amirite? Amirite?
Seriously though, Houston is going to be good this year, and Toronto probably won't be any worse, unless their hitting regresses and their pitching stays, you know, Torontoish. Texas is pretty much Houston, without the season of proven success.
And that's not to say that Spring Training record means anything. Oakland finished with the best record in the Cactus League last year, and if you add their Spring Training wins into their regular season wins, they would have finished with the third-best record in the American League. So that's something, yeah? Shoutouts to J. Koo. I got you.
Anyways. Kris Medlen is starting today. He's your presumptive fourth starter, after Yordano Ventura, Ian Kennedy, and Edinson Volquez. His off-season I'm sure consisted of spending time with those Medlen kids. Coming into 2016, a lot of eyes are on him to see whether or not he can find some of his old form. Last year's mixed bag is easily summed up as "good in relief, less good as a starter." He's made one start this Spring, pitching two innings without yielding a hit and striking out three.
- Surprise, Surprise, Surprise, Arizona: Mike Moustakas is crushing the ball. His OPS is 1.563, and Dave Stewart can't wait to sign him to the Espalda de Diamante, because correlation be damned in the world of snakes.
- Rey Fuentes and Jorge Bonifacio have both looked good offensively. Fuentes is slashing .429/.529/.714 and Bonifacio is slashing .333/.412/.667. Standard caveats apply, but Fuentes is a guy who could potentially see playing time. He's not a prospect per se, as he's already 25, but he's an intriguing guy that has performed pretty well in the minors. Shaun had Fuentes at No. 22 on his prospect list, but you know. Shaun. As soon as you turn 25 you pretty much don't exist. He's like Hollywood in that way. Hollywood Shaun. Last November, Sickels had him at No. 14.
- Your strikeout leader in the clubhouse is Miguel Almonte. Seven strikeouts in five innings with only one walk.
- If you were wondering how the Royals are using Sal "Night Train To Mundo Fine" Perez after signing him to an extension, he's tied with Christian Colon for most plate appearances at 21. Niiiight Traiiiin to the ennnnnddd...