Why aren’t the Cardinals playing Oscar Taveras?

Why aren’t the Cardinals playing Oscar Taveras?

Oscar Taveras has started just two of the Cardinals' last seven games and the left-handed-hitting outfield prospect is not in St. Louis' starting lineup on Tuesday night against Rays right-hander Jake Odorizzi. Getting the nod instead is the right-handed-hitting Allen Craig. What's the deal?

Gallardo improving, but still not close to returning


Gallardo improving, but still not close to returning

BALTIMORE – Yovani Gallardo will be eligible to some off the 15-day disabled list this weekend. He’s nowhere ready to be activated, but he remains optimistic.

He was sent to the DL with tendinitis of the right shoulder and biceps. 

Gallardo isn’t ready to begin throwing. 

“Not really, honestly. Obviously, the main thing right now is getting as strong as I can. No point going out there and throwing and going back to square one. I think the main thing is to get the strength to 100 percent and go from there, but hopefully it’s soon,” Gallardo said. 

“I think it’s definitely progressing really well. Really, really well with the exercises that I’ve been doing. It’s right around the corner. I’m anxious. I’m anxious to get back out there and start throwing and work my way back into the rotation.”

Gallardo hasn’t had an arm or shoulder injury before. 

“It’s the first time I’ve been on the DL with an arm issue, period. I’ve been on the DL for other things, but I’ve been able to throw. I think the only one is when I pulled my oblique. That’s the only other one. But the shoulder issue is always tough,” Gallardo said.

“You want to go out there and play catch and do all that sort of thing and you can’t. You can’t and it’s a little bit frustrating, but at the same time I know the guys in the training room are doing what’s best for me and the club. They’re trying to get me right and like I said, I’d rather deal with it only once rather than multiple times.”

Gallardo said that he’s going have to change the way he works out. 
“I think it’s something I’m going to incorporate from here on out for the rest of my career. I’ve never had any issues with my shoulder before. I felt like I was doing the stuff I had to do to stay in shape and keep it strong, but obviously the more innings you throw, it’s a little bit different. It’s unfortunate that I had to find out this way, but now I know that I have to incorporate it, whether it be a little bit more weight, a little bit different exercises to maintain that and stay strong,” Gallardo said. 

Orioles hoping Paredes' hitting perks up in Bowie


Orioles hoping Paredes' hitting perks up in Bowie

BALTIMORE – In Jimmy Paredes’ seven games at Bowie, he’s batting just .192. Paredes, who is on a rehab assignment, trying to return from an injury he suffered to his left wrist more than two months ago. Paredes also played one game for Frederick, where he was 3-for-4. 

Manager Buck Showalter was hoping for better things from Paredes, who is halfway through a possible 20-day rehab assignment. 

“Jimmy’s playing. He hasn’t been quite as productive as I thought he might be, but I think he’s working out. It’s been a long period of inactivity, so I’m going to give him the benefit of the doubt. He’s got a pretty good track record of hitting. He’s going to stay with the Bowie club. I know his last day there is the 15th—if we want to carry it that far,” Showalter said. 

With the club currently without J.J. Hardy, Showalter said that could change the team’s plans for Paredes.

“It might even enhance them, give us some coverage there. I’d like to see him kind of get it going a little bit [with the] bat. We just know it could go as long as the 15th—or it could be earlier,” Showalter said. 

NOTES: Showalter said that Zach Britton, who sprained his left ankle on Friday “had a good day today,” and is nearing a return. … Paul Janish, who could be added shortly as an extra infielder, was not put on paternity leave by Norfolk so that he could join the Orioles quickly if needed. Janish’s wife is expected to deliver on Friday. .

AFC North: Manziel struggles continue, as does Browns search for franchise QB


AFC North: Manziel struggles continue, as does Browns search for franchise QB

Watching Johnny Manziel make his court appearance Thursday on domestic violence charges was another reminder of how badly many of the Browns’ quarterback decisions have turned out.

Just two years ago, Manziel was the 22nd overall pick, and the Browns hoped he would be the answer to their quarterback problems. How wrong that looks now, with Manziel out of the NFL, with an uncertain future both on and off the field.

The Browns’ decision to take Manziel in 2014 looks even worse when you consider:

- Two other starting quarterbacks were drafted after Manziel in 2014 – Teddy Bridgewater of the Vikings (No. 32) and Derek Carr of the Raiders (No. 36). 

- Eight first-round picks in the 2014 draft have already made the Pro Bowl – linebackers Anthony Barr (Vikings), Khalil Mack (Raiders), and C. J. Mosley (Ravens); wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (Giants), defensive tackle Aaron Donald (Rams); guard Zach Martin (Cowboys); cornerback Jason Verrett (Chargers), and Bridgewater.

The Browns’ new regime of executive VP Sashi Brown, chief strategy officer Paul DePodesta, and coach Hue Jackson could have spent another first-round pick on a quarterback this year. Instead, they signed Robert Griffin III during free agency, traded down out of the No. 2 spot in the draft, acquired some valuable draft picks, and waited until Round 3 to draft quarterback Cody Kessler of USC in the third round.

The Browns aren’t sure Griffin or Kessler will solve their quarterback problems either. But it’s hard to blame them for avoiding spending another first-round pick on a quarterback. Not after seeing how far Manziel has fallen so fast.