EXTRAS: Surkamp's success, injury updates, Batman vs. Superman

547550.jpg

EXTRAS: Surkamp's success, injury updates, Batman vs. Superman

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- After starting his spring with a roughouting, Eric Surkamp allowed one run in three innings for the second straightstart Sunday against the Seattle Mariners.Surkamp limited the Mariners to three hits, didnt walk a batter andstruck out three. He threw 29 of his 43 pitches for strikes and was throwingboth his curveball and slider.In his first start of the spring, the young lefty allowed three runs in just1.1 innings, but he has rebounded since.Hes been better each time out, Giants manger Bruce Bochysaid. He looks confident, threw more strikes, had a better rhythm.Surkamp was happy with how he mixed in a lot of breakingballs against the Mariners.RELATED: Posey plays four innings, nabs base-stealer
I left a couple of them up in the zone that I got away with, but for the mostpart I was pretty happy with keeping it down, he said. I felt like it hadgood bite to it.--Surkamp would likely be called upon to be the Giants No. 5 starter if RyanVogelsong starts the season on the disabled list, but the 2011 Willie Mac Awardwinner is making progress after throwing 35 pitches in a bullpen sessionSunday.The plan is for Vogelsong to throw another 45 pitches in thebullpen in a couple of days.

They want me to make sure my stamina is okay and everything first, Vogelsongsaid. But everything feels good; back feels good, arm feels good.Bochy was happy with Vogelsongs bullpen, but is definitely playing it safe.The back can be quirky, Bochy said. You want to makesure hes 100 before you start getting live action. You dont need a setback.Now youre looking at a longer period of time before he comes back so we arebeing a little cautious.RELATED: Posey helps Wilson make scoreless spring debutBochy said the Giants dont need a fifth starter until April15th against the Pittsburgh Pirates, which gives Vogelsong more timeto get healthy.--In other injured Giants news, Nate Schierholtz toldreporters that he bruised his hip playing Saturday.Schierholtz was taking batting practice on Sunday, however, and said he "feelsfine" and expects to play Monday.--Another day, another two home run game from a Giants catchingprospect.After Tommy Joseph launched two balls over the left-fieldfence Saturday, Hector Sanchez matched him with two home runs, one from eitherside of the plate.The switch-hitting catcher is now batting .500 with three home runs and eightRBIs in just 14 at-bats.--

Gregor Blanco continues to makea case for a 25-man roster spot.The non-roster invitee went 2-for-3 and stole his fifth base of the spring.He could offer Bochy speed and defense off the bench as the teams fourthoutfielder if they decide to dedicate a spot to him on the Opening Day roster.--As the Giants were stretching early Sunday morning, Brian Wilson and TimLincecum were keeping it loose by arguing about who would win in a fight between Superman and Batman.Its an age-old debate and one that Craig Calcaterra of Harball Talk is morequalified to settle, so Ill let him take it from here.

Dodgers trade top pitching prospect to Rays for 2B Forsythe

Dodgers trade top pitching prospect to Rays for 2B Forsythe

The Dodgers' months-long search for a second baseman is over.

Los Angeles has acquired infielder Logan Forsythe from the Rays, the team announced Monday afternoon.

The Dodgers are sending top pitching prospect Jose De Leon to Tampa Bay.

In 127 games for the Rays in 2016, the 30-year-old Forsythe hit .264/.333/.444 with 24 doubles, 20 home runs and 52 RBI.

Forsythe is set to make $7 million in 2017 and has a team option worth $8.5 million or a $1 million buyout for 2018.

De Leon, 24, made his major league debut for the Dodgers during the 2016 season. In four starts, he posted a 6.35 ERA while striking out 15 batters in 17 innings. In 16 startts for Triple-A Oklahoma City in 2016, De Leon registered a 2.61 ERA and struck out 111 batters in just 86.1 innings.

A native of Puerto Rico, De Leon was recently ranked as the Dodgers' No. 3 prospect Baseball America.

For most of the offseason, the Dodgers had been linked to Twins second baseman Brian Dozier, but the two sides couldn't come together on a deal.

Spring training to be slightly shortened starting in 2018

Spring training to be slightly shortened starting in 2018

NEW YORK -- For everyone who thinks spring training is too long, help is on the way - a little, anyway.

Spring training will be shortened by two days starting in 2018, when new restrictions in Major League Baseball's collective bargaining agreement take effect on game times for regular-season getaway days.

The voluntary reporting date for pitchers, catchers and injured players will be 43 days before the major league opener instead of 45, according to a copy of the agreement obtained by The Associated Press. For other players, the date will be 38 days ahead instead of 40.

The change was tied to spreading each team's 162 regular-season games over 187 days, up from 183.

Players' association Assistant General Counsel Matt Nussbaum said the union's goal was to create more days off during the season "in a way that doesn't just chew up offseason days."

"We have heard for years and I'm sure we will continue to hear that spring training is too long, that guys are really ready to go well before opening day, but I think what the commissioner's office would tell you is that there are big challenges for the clubs in substantially shortening spring training because they have various commitments to put on a certain number of games," he said Monday.

Late arrival times ahead of regular-season series openers also were addressed.

Starting in 2018, the latest possible start time on getaway days when either team is traveling to a game in another city the next day or a home off day will be calculated by subtracting the time of the flight over 2½ hours from 7 p.m.

There are cutouts for Sunday night games broadcast by ESPN and games after June 1 at Texas' current home ballpark - where the Rangers avoid afternoons for much of the season because of the heat.

Another new rule for 2018 says no game in the original schedule may be set for before 5 p.m. when a team played the previous night in another city starting 7 p.m. or later. There are exceptions involving flights of 90 minutes or less for home openers and holiday weekends. Current cutouts are carried over for up to six exceptions each season at Chicago's Wrigley Field and rescheduled games involving flights of 90 minutes or less.

"We fully recognize that our players play a very demanding schedule, and we're always looking for ways to ease the burden on players while at the same time scheduling games at a convenient time for our fans to watch them," MLB Chief Legal Officer Dan Halem said.

Sunday night games on holiday weekends followed by afternoon games still seem likely to occur.

"We have contracts with various national broadcast partners that limit our ability to schedule day games in certain instances," Halem said.

Nussbaum said if the players had their way, there would be "a flat rule that says all getaway games are day games" but understand why that would cause difficulty for teams.

"There's still going to be some challenges in the schedule," he said, "but we think what we've done with these two prongs is pare back the most egregious of the travel."

As part of the agreement, one game in the major leagues may be scheduled each year on the Thursday after the All-Star Game starting in 2018.