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Bits: Wainwright encouraging on Tuesday

4/25/2012

St. Louis Cardinals right-hander Adam Wainwright threw six innings of one-run ball Tuesday, allowing six hits and striking out seven. Wainwright, who began the day with a 3.08 career ERA, was scaring his owners with a 9.88 ERA entering Tuesday, but seemed to turn a corner. He is coming back from Tommy John surgery. The Cardinals still haven't scored any runs for Wainwright this season (or the New York Mets for Johan Santana), but he remains a good buy-low choice.

Oakland Athletics left-hander Tommy Milone has received enough run support to go 3-1; he beat the Chicago White Sox 2-0 Tuesday, scattering three singles over eight innings. However, Milone is throwing his fastball in the 87 mph range, without many strikeouts, so expect his current 2.00 ERA to perhaps double as the season goes on.

Walk away from Kansas City Royals left-hander Jonathan Sanchez. He allowed four hits, four runs and seven walks in Tuesday's loss, all in 4 2/3 innings, and his ERA rose to 6.75. Sanchez began Tuesday owned in 40 percent of ESPN leagues, but he's not in San Francisco anymore. With 17 walks in 17 1/3 innings (and a 2.02 WHIP), it's time to move on.

Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Eric Thames homered Tuesday, his first of the season. Thames is hitting .273 but it hasn't been a good April, as he has three extra-base hits and two RBIs. Meanwhile, down at Triple-A Las Vegas, Travis Snider is batting .405 with 23 RBIs in 18 games. Don't be surprised if Snider replaces Thames in Toronto's lineup soon.

Seattle Mariners third baseman Alex Liddi homered and stole a base Tuesday. His stay in the majors might last only until Mike Carp is ready to come off the DL, but hitting performances like this could alter the plan. Liddi smacked 30 home runs at Triple-A Tacoma last season, and three more for the Mariners. He strikes out a lot, but the Mariners need power.

Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Jose Tabata singled twice, scored a run and stole his third base of the season Tuesday. Tabata is hitting only .196, with no power and little plate patience, but there remains batting average and stolen base upside. The next month is critical for Tabata, but don't give up in NL-only formats yet.