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MLB Rumors

Scott Hairston takes batting practice on the field
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com

Nationals manager Matt Williams said outfielder Scott Hairston (oblique) took batting practice on the field Wednesday. Williams added it will be important to see how Hairston feels Thursday.

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Ryan Zimmerman (thumb) can't grip bat yet
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com

Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman (thumb) can't grip a baseball bat yet, but he is running in the pool, according to The Washington Post.

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Brad Miller back in second spot despite slump
by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com

The flip-flop of Dustin Ackley and Brad Miller in the Wednesday lineup got the Mariners was intended to reinstate the latter into the second spot despite his slump.

Miller doubled in the eighth inning Tuesday for his first hit since April 17. But Lloyd McClendon claims optimism that he can regain the form that made him one of the hottest hitters in the game in spring training.

"Hopefully he's over the hump and back on course again," McClendon told MLB.com.

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Evan Gattis comes through in the clutch again
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com

The Marlins should probably stop pitching to Braves catcher Evan Gattis in clutch situations. Two days after Gattis beat the Marlins with a walk-off home run, Gattis broke an eighth-inning tie Wednesday with a pinch-hit, two-run double off A.J. Ramos to lead Atlanta to a 3-1 win.

Despite the game-winning hits, Gattis is batting just .150 (3 for 20) with one double, one home run and three RBI in his last six games (four starts). He does have five home runs and 10 RBI through 16 games.

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Manager intrigued by Luis Valbuena as leadoff hitter
by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com

Luis Valbuena appears destined for more opportunities to bat leadoff. The Cubs third baseman has impressed Rick Renteria with his propensity to produce from that spot in the lineup.

"His on-base percentage has been extremely high, especially against right-handed pitching," Renteria told MLB.com.

Indeed. Valbeuna owns a .420 OBP against righties. He is batting just .250, but has 12 walks in just 40 at-bats. The Cubs have generally used Emilio Bonifacio and Junior Lake in the leadoff position, but that could change.

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Skip Schumaker headed to extended spring training
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com

Reds outfielder Skip Schumaker (shoulder) will head to extended spring training in Arizona to get some at-bats before beginning a rehab assignment, per The Cincinnati Enquirer.

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Hot-hitting White Sox duo still out
by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com

Third baseman Conor Gillaspie (hand) and center fielder Adam Eaton (hamstring) are still sidelined for the White Sox. Neither has been placed in the lineup for the Wednesday game in Detroit.

Both hope they can maintain their momentum upon their return. Gillaspie has hit safely in 15 of 16 games played this season. Eaton owns an impressive on-base percentage of .394 and has scored 15 runs.

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B.J. Rosenberg sent back to Triple-A
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com

The Phillies optioned reliever B.J. Rosenberg to Triple-A Lehigh Valley to clear a roster spot for Cole Hamels, who was activated off the 15-day disabled list Wednesday.

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Cole Hamels activated for season debut
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com

As expected, the Phillies activated starting pitcher Cole Hamels (shoulder) off the 15-day disabled list to make his season debut Wednesday against the Dodgers.

Hamels went 0-1 with a 2.12 ERA and 0.77 WHIP in three rehab starts for Class A Clearwater. He struck out 12 and walked one in 17 innings.

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Aroldis Chapman getting closer to rehab assignment
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com

Reds closer Aroldis Chapman (head) said he felt good after throwing live batting practice Wednesday, per The Cincinnati Enquirer.

"Normal, nothing out of the ordinary," he said.

Chapman will throw another batting practice session this weekend in Atlanta and then begin a rehab assignment.

"He threw all his pitches," manager Bryan Price said. "He was very sharp, good velocity. Good slider, good changeup. Looked like midseason form."

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