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Browsing Posts tagged Sam Fuld

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JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS — Sunday (5/29/2011) was Super Sam Fuld Cape Day at Tropicana Field, and the Tampa Bay Rays LF responded with characteristic scrappiness in a 7-0 rout of the Cleveland Indians.

  • With two men on base in the 5th inning, Fuld legged out an infield hit to drive in one run. An errant throw to first base by Indians SS Asdrubal Cabrera allowed Fuld to reach second base and scored a second run.
  • Earlier the same inning, Fuld made a dramatic, sliding attempt to catch a sinking liner hit by Indians 3B Adam Everett. Instant replays showed Fuld trapped the ball.
  • Fuld, who covers a lot of outfield real estate with his short legs, made a running grab of Travis Buck’s fly ball in the 9th inning.

No doubt, the 29-year-old Fuld is not hitting as well as he was when the Rays announced Super Sam Fuld Cape Day, on April 13. At that time he was batting .313 en route to a season high of .396. Today he is hitting .227, with an uncharacteristically low on-base percentage of .276.

Fewer hits and walks have meant fewer base-stealing opportunities. Fuld stole 10 bases on 13 attempts in April but has stolen only 2 bases on 4 tries so far in May.

But above-average fielding and hustle have allowed Fuld to remain both a starter and a fan favorite, and he continues to hit the ball hard, if not always “where they ain’t.”

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Sam Fuld, 5 others make All-Star ballot

Click here to cast your votes

JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS — Voting began yesterday (4/26/2011) for the 2011 All-Star Game, and all 6 Jewish position players were on the ballot.

The six include:

Fans can vote online by going here, and up to 25 times .

All-Star pitchers are selected by team managers, so the fate of Jewish throwers like Oakland A’s reliever Craig Breslow, Washington Nationals starter Jason Marquis and Chicago Cubs reliever John Grabow remains to be seen.

The biggest surprise on the list is the selection of Sam Fuld, who began the season a virtual unknown but has grown famous for his aggressive baserunning, daring catches and surprisingly productive hitting. MLB.com’s article on the All-Star ballot even mentions him:

Could the amazing first-month story of Rays outfielder Sam Fuld carry momentum through the voting?

As they say in Chicago, vote early and often.

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Even Fuld’s bad days inspire awe

JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS — Sam Fuld doesn’t strike out much. Through Saturday (4/23/2011) he had whiffed just 6 times, or once in every 18.5 at-bats, second best in the American League.

But Fuld just can’t do anything half way. And on Sunday’s game against the Toronto Blue Jays (4/24/2011), he put on a strike-out clinic.

Fuld, whose first full major-league season has been a marvel so far, whiffed 4 times, three of them (thankfully) swinging. Blue Jays starter Ricky Romero struck him out 3 times with a changeup. Relief pitcher Marc Rzepczynski got him with a slider. The 0-for-4 day knocked Fuld from 1st to 10th in the A.L. batting race, at .346.

Fuld wasn’t alone. Although the Rays won the game 2-0, Blue Jays pitchers struck out a total of 12 batters.

And although it wasn’t his finest hour, Fuld still contributed to the Rays’ victory by helping tire out the Blue Jays’ pitchers. Of the 124 pitches they tossed, 21 were spent striking out Fuld.

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JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS — There was another display of Maccabee Power in Major League Baseball yesterday (4/23/2011).

Four Jewish ballplayers — Milwaukee Brewers LF Ryan Braun, New York Mets 1B Ike Davis, Minnesota Twins 3B Danny Valencia, and Boston Red Sox 3B Kevin Youkilis — hit HRs, along with a combined 8 RBIs.

It’s no fluke. Through Saturday (4/23/2011), baseball’s six Jewish position players had hit a total of 23 HRs in 431 at-bats, or one in every 18.7 at-bats. By contrast, according to Jewish Baseball News calculations, non-Jewish players had a combined 526 HRs in 20,230 at-bats, or one in every 38.5 at-bats.

The comparison is ever-so-slightly skewed, because the non-Jewish totals include at-bats by pitchers, who typically are not HR hitters. Even so, it’s likely that Jewish position players are out-homering their non-Jewish counterparts roughly 2-to-1.

Leading the way for the Maccabees are Braun, who is tied for the National League lead with 7 HRs, and Kinsler, who has 5.

Several Jewish players are on a hot streak. Davis has homered in each of his last 3 games, Braun in 3 of his last 4, and Youkilis in 4 of his last 8.

The player with the least round-trippers is Sam Fuld, with one. But Fuld has nothing to be ashamed of. He leads the American League in stolen bases (10), ranks 4th in batting average (.365), and is tied for 2nd in triples (2),

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Another awesome Passover performance

JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS –Maybe it’s the matzoh.

What is it about Jewish baseball players and Passover this season? On Monday (4/18), the night of the first seder, five Jewish batters hit a collective .650, each one knocking out anywhere from 2 to 4 hits apiece.

Last night (4/23), the Jews brought their homer sticks to the Passover plate, too. Ryan Braun, Sam Fuld, Ike Davis and Ian Kinsler batted a combined .550, hit a total of 3 long balls, and drove in 7 runs.

Elijah did not play.

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On Passover, Jews bat .650

JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS — On the first night of Passover (4/18/2011), five Jewish batters split the defense like the Red Sea, batting a collective .650.

Every player had at least 2 hits, and each one saw his team win. Tampa Bay Rays OF Sam Fuld vaulted to first place in batting average among American Leaguers.

No word on how players of Egyptian descent performed.

Here is an overview of this special night for the Jews, player by player:

  • Milwaukee Brewers LF Ryan Braun singled 3 times, walked once, hit a go-ahead sacrifice fly in the 12th inning, and drove in 2 runs in a 6-3 win over the Philadelphia Phillies. For the season, Braun is batting .357 (10th in the National League) with 4 HRs and 11 RBIs. He is ranked 5th in the league both in on-base percentage (.471) and OPS (1.096), which combines on-base percentage with slugging percentage.
  • Tampa Bay Rays OF Sam Fuld continued his red-hot streak, going a perfect 4-for-4 with a double, three singles, and yet another diving catch in a 5-0 victory over the Chicago White Sox. He leads the American League in batting average (.396) and has 1 HR and 5 RBIs. He ranks 1st in stolen bases (7), 5th both in on-base percentage (.431) and OPS (1.035), and 6th in slugging percentage (.604).
  • Texas Rangers 2B Ian Kinsler (2B) doubled, tripled, and walked twice in a 7-1 triumph over the Los Angeles Angels. It was the best performance in weeks for Kinsler, who began the season like gangbusters but has been slumping. For the season, he is hitting just .196 with 4 HRs and 8 RBIs. Thanks to 12 walks, he has a solid on-base percentage of .357.
  • Minnesota Twins 3B Danny Valencia singled and scored twice and drove in a run in a 5-3 win over the Baltimore Orioles. For the season, Valencia is hitting .236 with 1 HR and 6 RBIs.
  • Boston Red Sox 3B Kevin Youkilis homered (see video), doubled, and drove in 2 runs in a 9-1 trouncing of the Toronto Blue Jays. Youkilis is batting .213 with 2 HRs and 7 RBIs. The aptly-named “Greek God of Walks” is tied for the league lead with 15 and is ranked 8th in on-base percentage (.422).

To mangle a phrase: Next year in the World Series!

Player (position) Team AB R H HR RBI BB SO
1 Ryan Braun (LF) Brewers 4 1 3 0 2 1 0
2 Sam Fuld (CF) Rays 4 1 4 0 0 0 0
3 Ian Kinsler (2B) Rangers 3 1 2 0 0 2 0
4 Daniel Valencia (3B) Twins 4 2 2 0 1 0 0
5 Kevin Youkilis (3B) Red Sox 5 2 2 1 2 0 1
TOTAL 20 7 13 1 5 3 1

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Sam Fuld, by the numbers

JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS — Tampa Bay Rays CF Sam Fuld has become one of baseball’s most unlikely stars this season. Thanks to jaw-dropping catches, a rifle of an arm, and clutch hitting, he has captured the imagination of fans both Jewish and not.

Statistics gathered by Jewish Baseball News reader Jack W. provide hard evidence of Fuld’s impact. Through Saturday’s games (4/15/2011), the 29-year-old New Hampshire native ranked among the top American League players in multiple categories:

Baserunning

  • 1st in stolen bases (7)

Hitting

  • 4th in Z-Contact, the percentage of times a batter makes contact with the ball when swinging at strikes (97.4%)
  • 6th in doubles (5)
  • 7th in batting average (.341)
  • 7th in at-bats per strikeout (11)
  • 7th in extra-base hits (7)

Fielding

  • 3rd in outfield assists (2)
  • 4th in range factor per nine innings as a left fielder, which is a player’s total putouts and assists divided by nine (2.53)

That’s one all-around player.

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A salute to Sam Fuld

Note: This article by Jewish Baseball News editor Scott Barancik appeared in the April 17, 2011 edition of the St. Petersburg Times.

All last season, my friend Jessica sent me updates about a Chicago Cubs prospect named Sam Fuld.

Sam ran into a wall chasing a pop fly, she wrote. Sam threw out two runners. Sam may never escape the minors because the Cubs want outfielders with power, not speed or defensive prowess.

From my vantage point in St. Petersburg, Jessica’s fervor seemed misplaced. Scrappy fielders with economics degrees from Stanford are for connoisseurs, not big-league managers.

Then an off-season trade brought Fuld to the Tampa Bay Rays. Now, like Jessica, I am smitten.

Box scores don’t do him justice. Take Game 2 of the recent series in Chicago. The box score says Sam went hitless in four at-bats. But here’s what I saw:

Third inning: Paul Konerko drills a one-hopper off the leftfield wall. Fuld’s quick-release toss to second base holds him to a single.

Seventh inning: Fuld draws a walk that loads the bases and knocks the White Sox starter out of the game.

Eighth inning: Konerko tries to stretch a long drive into a double, but Fuld tosses him out.

Ninth inning: With the Rays down 7-4, Fuld legs out a roller to shortstop, whose rushed throw bounces past first base. Teammate Elliot Johnson scores, Fuld lands on second and later scores. The Rays rally to win 9-7.

A day later, Fuld earned instant celebrity for a play White Sox backstop A.J. Pierzynski called “one of the best catches I’ve ever seen.” There were two outs and the bases loaded when batter Juan Pierre launched a drive into the rightfield corner. Fuld sprinted to his left, took a horizontal leap, and caught the ball backhanded before skidding onto his belly.

And just Monday, he made another diving catch and got four extra-base hits in a win over Boston.

In 2008, Des Moines Register columnist Sean Keeler captured Fuld’s reckless grit. A wall magnet, Keeler called him. A crash-test dummy in a prior life.

Fuld may be a rough in the diamond, but there’s another reason Jessica and I are rooting for him. Of the 750 ballplayers who made opening-day rosters this season, he was one of just nine Jews.

I don’t know where Sam’s celebrating Passover. But like some modern-day Moses, I’m pretty sure he would split the Red Sea to catch a pop fly.

— Scott Barancik, editor of JewishBaseballNews.com

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Valencia and Fuld do battle in St. Pete

JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS — The Tampa Bay Rays played the Minnesota Twins on Friday night (4/15/2011), but for Jewish baseball fans, the game had a subplot: which team’s Jewish player would perform better?

Both contributed.

Twins 3B Danny Valencia, off to a slow start this season after finishing 3rd in last year’s A.L. Rookie of the Year contest, hit an RBI double over the head of Rays centerfielder B.J. Upton in the 5th inning to put the Twins up 2-0.

Rays LF Sam Fuld went 3/4 with a double and two singles, raising his team-high batting average to .366.

Twice, the two players went head-to-head. Fuld caught Valencia’s pop fly in the top of the 7th inning. In the bottom of the inning, Valencia got revenge, tagging Fuld out as he tried to steal 3rd base. (Fuld, who leads the American League with 7 stolen bases this season, was caught stealing twice Friday by Twins catcher Drew Butera.)

In the end, the Rays prevailed 5-2. But Jewish Baseball News tips its yarmulke to both players.

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The Fuld Fhenomenon

Sam Fuld Superhero Cape

FULD BASEBALL NEWS — Just 11 games into his first season with the Tampa Bay Rays, CF Sam Fuld has become an Internet icon.

Thanks to his superhuman catch in Chicago, his extra-base barrage in Boston, and a yearning for legitimate heroes in the age of steroids, the 29-year-old Fuld is seemingly everywhere.

  • On Twitter, the diminutive Stanford alum has tentatively replaced actor Chuck Norris and football player Tim Tebow as the object of heroic whimsy. For example: “Sam Fuld’s tears cure cancer. Too bad Sam Fuld never cries.” And: “Honus Wagner bought a Sam Fuld rookie card at auction.” Or: “When Sam Fuld dives for a fly ball, the grass gets Sam Fuld stains.” Rays manager Joe Maddon’s favorite? “Superman wears a Sam Fuld t-shirt to bed.”
  • The Tampa Bay Rays announced they will give away 10,000 Super Sam Fuld Superhero Capes at a home game in late May. The capes will replace the giveaway originally scheduled for that date: a Manny Ramirez bobblehead doll.
  • Jewish Baseball News has decided to rebrand itself as “Fuld Baseball News” until the editor grows tired of it.

Keep making us proud, Sam.

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Sam Fuld has career night

JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS — Only one player in Tampa Bay Rays history, B.J. Upton, has hit for the cycle in a single game. On Monday (4/11/2011), outfielder Sam Fuld gave up a chance at becoming the second such player to do something even greater.

Fuld, 29, had already hit a double, triple, and 3-run home run when he came to at in the 9th inning of Tampa Bay’s 16-5 win over the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park. He needed only a single to complete the so-called cycle. But when he lined a pitch into left field, he resisted any temptation to stop at first base and instead stretched the hit into a double.

Here is what Fuld (and Rays manager Joe Maddon) told the St. Petersburg Times about his decision not to stop at first base:

“You can’t do that,” Fuld said. And I don’t get too many extra-base hits, so I’m going to take them when I can. It was a sure double, so there was no choice but to get your double there.” (Joe) Maddon said it was a sign of Fuld’s integrity. “I know a lot of guys who would have stopped,” Maddon said. “It just indicates what he’s all about right there.”

Acquired from the Chicago Cubs in an off-season trade, Fuld spent most of his six years in that franchise laboring in the minors. Making the Rays’ opening-day roster was a first for him.

Monday’s game was a breakout in more ways than one for Fuld. Known primarily for his excellent arm and daredevil fielding — a catch he made Saturday (4/9/2011) against the Chicago White Sox has been called the play of the year — the Stanford University alum has historically been a light hitter with above-average plate discipline and excellent baserunning skills. Monday’s home run was just his second in 159 major-league at-bats.

So far in 2011, Fuld is batting .321 with 3 RBIs, 3 walks, a league-leading 5 stolen bases, and an OPS (slugging percentage plus on-base percentage) of 1.030.

Fuld didn’t let his bat do all the talking Monday. He also made this concussion-risking catch to rob Red Sox 2B Dustin Pedroia of an RBI hit.

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Fuld's diving catch -- click to see video (Associated Press)

JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS — Tampa Bay Rays outfielder Sam Fuld has made a lot of highlight-reel catches in his career, but the diving nab he made in right field to stop a bases-loaded, two-out rally by the Chicago White Sox on Saturday (4/9/2011) left both teammates and opponents in awe.

Here is video of the catch, and here is what various people told MLB.com about it:

B.J. Upton, Rays centerfielder: “Oh my god, oh my. I thought he was going to dive into the [wall]. But he kind of straightened out. I was hoping he would get there. I mean, full extension, I couldn’t really tell if he caught it or not. I just saw him roll over and throw his glove up. I knew he had a shot at it. I didn’t know how far away he was from it. I was screaming from center field when he caught it. ‘Great catch!’ Should be play of the year so far.”

Wade Davis, Rays pitcher, who was on the mound: “”I’ve never seen a catch that good in person,” Davis said. “That was huge.”

A.J. Pierzynski, White Sox catcher: “He’s made some nice plays against us these three games, but that catch he made off of Juan Pierre is one of the best catches I’ve ever seen. Honestly, he ran like 50 yards to get to that ball. It was an incredible catch and I tip my hat to him for, one, he didn’t kill himself on the fence and, two, he got there and made the play. It was an amazing play.”

Joe Maddon, Rays manager: “His defense has been spectacular — tremendous defense. He’s pretty much a clinician out there. He pretty much does everything right.”

But the most rewarding comment may have come from a White Sox fan who can be seen, in the video, leaning over a splayed-out Fuld and yelling something that, to an amateur lipreader, looks a lot like: “Asshole.”

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JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS — The 2011 MLB season opened Thursday (3/31/2011), and Milwaukee Brewers LF Ryan Braun started things off on the right foot.

Braun, 27, went 2/3 with a long blast over the center-field fence, two walks, and 3 runs scored in a 7-6 loss to the Cincinnati Reds. In 2010, Braun went 2/4 on Opening Day, with a double, sacrifice fly, and two RBIs.

Braun is one of 9 Jewish players to make this year’s Opening Day rosters. They are:

Several players who were on major-league teams in 2010 didn’t make an Opening Day roster this year. The Boston Red Sox sent LF Ryan Kalish to the team’s AAA affiliate, the Los Angeles Dodgers cut RF Gabe Kapler, and Texas Rangers P Scott Feldman is on the disabled list.

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Our 2011 Spring Training Awards

JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS — At least 19 Jews got playing time during Spring Training 2011, including five pitchers and 14 position players.

Here are our awards honoring the best, worst, and most surprising performances:

Best All-Around Offense: Ian Kinsler. The Texas Rangers 2B didn’t look like the same player who sat out nearly 100 games last season with injuries. Kinsler, 28, led all Jewish batters with 7 doubles, 5 HRs, 13 RBIs (tied), and a .389 on-base percentage. Although Jewish batters as a group struck out way more than they walked (94 vs. 41), Kinsler was one of just two players who didn’t, matching his 5 Ks with 5 BBs.

Best All-Around Offense (runner-up): Ryan Braun. The Milwaukee Brewers LF batted only 40 times, but that didn’t stop him from hitting 4 HRs, driving in 11 runs, and leading all Jews with 15 runs scored, a .325 batting average, .700 slugging percentage, and 1.072 OPS (on-base percentage plus slugging percentage).

Best All-Around Offense (honorable mention): Ike Davis. The New York Mets 1B pretty much matched the productivity of his 2010 rookie season, hitting .273 with 3 HRs, 13 RBIs (tied/1st), and a .344 on-base percentage.

Breakout offense: Sam Fuld. At 29, you can’t quite call the Tampa Bay Rays CF an up-and-comer. But Fuld made the most of what turned out to be his best chance in years to make an opening-day roster, hitting .277 with 1 HR, 5 extra-base hits, 8 RBIs, and 4 stolen bases. And he got his wish: a seat on the Rays’ bench.

Most disappointing offense: Kevin Youkilis. Whatever you chalk it up to — bad thumb, the distraction of switching from 1B to 3B, etc. — the Boston Red Sox stalwart, normally an on-base machine, struggled at the plate this Spring. Youk hit  just .175 with no HRs, 4 RBIs, a Jew-high 15 strikeouts, and just 4 walks. Teammate Ryan Kalish was a close second in this category, hitting .235 with 0 HRs and one lonely RBI.

Weirdest stats: Ben Guez. The Detroit Tigers CF has yet to play a regular-season MLB game and saw only limited playing time in Spring Training, getting 12 plate appearances and 7 at-bats. But oh, what Guez did with them. The 24-year-old singled twice, doubled once, and walked five times, good enough for a .429 batting average and .667 on-base percentage.

Nicest surprise: John Grabow. After a dismal 2010 in which he went 1-3 with a 7.36 ERA and “held” opposing batters to a .321 average, the Chicago Cubs reliever must have grown tired of being Public Enemy #1 in the Windy City. How else can you explain Grabow’s 2.57 ERA in Spring Training? A close second to Grabow in this awards category is Washington Nationals starter Jason Marquis, who went 2-9 with a 6.60 ERA in an injury-plagued 2010 season but finished Spring Training with a 1-1 record and a 4.02 ERA.

Worst surprise: Craig Breslow. Arguably the only Jewish MLB pitcher who didn’t embarrass himself last year, the Oakland A’s reliever went 4-4 in 2010 with a 3.01 ERA, holding opposing batters to a meek .194 batting average. But Breslow had an awful spring, with an 11.25 ERA and an opposing-hitters batting average of, believe it or not, .500. The saving grace? We’re only talking about 5 appearances and 4 innings pitched, not a lot to go on. Still, the Freaky Friday switcheroo Breslow and Grabow did this Spring has got us mighty confused.

Here are the final 2011 Spring Training stats for position players:

TEAM POS AB R 2B HR RBI AVG OBP
James Rapoport STL CF 1 0 0 0 0 1.000 1.000
Ben Guez DET CF 7 0 1 0 0 .429 .667
Ryan Lavarnway BOS CF 9 1 1 1 3 .333 .333
Josh Satin NYM 2B 6 1 0 1 2 .333 .333
Ryan Braun MIL LF 40 15 3 4 11 .325 .372
Danny Valencia MIN 3B 65 6 6 1 8 .308 .333
Ian Kinsler TEX 2B 63 14 7 5 13 .302 .389
Sam Fuld TB CF 47 9 3 1 8 .277 .333
Ike Davis NYM 1B 55 5 4 3 13 .273 .344
Gabe Kapler LAD RF 45 6 3 1 7 .244 .277
Ryan Kalish TB LF 51 4 2 0 1 .235 .316
Jake Lemmerman LAD SS 5 1 1 0 0 .200 .200
Kevin Youkilis BOS 3B 57 3 2 0 4 .175 .238
Jason Kipnis CLE 2B 18 3 0 1 2 .167 .250
TOTAL 469 68 33 18 72 .269

And the final 2011 stats for pitchers:

TEAM W L ERA G IP H BB SO
John Grabow CHC 0 0 2.57 7 7.0 8 3 4
Jason Marquis WSH 1 1 4.02 4 15.2 15 6 9
Aaron Poreda SD 0 1 6.75 3 2.2 2 5 1
Michael Schwimer PHI 0 0 7.20 4 5.0 5 2 4
Craig Breslow OAK 0 0 11.25 5 4.0 9 2 2
TOTAL 1 2 5.35

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TEAM W L ERA G IP H BB SO
John Grabow CHC 0 0 2.57 7 7 8 3 4
Jason Marquis WSH 1 1 4.02 4 15.2 15 6 9
Aaron Poreda SD 0 1 6.75 3 2.2 2 5 1
Michael Schwimer PHI 0 0 7.20 4 5 5 2 4
Craig Breslow OAK 0 0 11.25 5 4 9 2 2
TOTAL 1 2 5.35
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Roster hopes rising for Sam Fuld

JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS — Early on in spring training, Sam Fuld‘s chances of making the Tampa Bay Rays’ opening-day roster didn’t look good.

In fact, it was looking a lot like Fuld’s 2010 spring training with the Chicago Cubs, when the scrappy centerfielder hit a meek .143 with just 2 RBIs in 35 at-bats, earning him a trip down to AAA.

But after a slow start in 2011, Fuld is on fire. On Thursday (3/24/2011), for example, the 29-year-old went 1/2 with a 2-run HR and a sacrifice bunt. And in Friday’s 9-5 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates, he went 2/3 with a double, 2 RBIs, and a stolen base.

Fuld’s surge has raised his spring training totals to a respectable .286 batting average, along with 1 HR, 8 RBIs (the team high is 10 RBIs), 4 stolen bases (tied for second on the Rays), and a .348 on-base percentage.

Often called a defensive specialist, Fuld’s Achilles heel is his bat. This time around, he has a good chance of making a team’s opening-day roster for the first time in his career.

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Daily highlights

JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS — Here are your Daily Highlights for Wednesday (3/16/2011):

It took Tampa Bay Rays CF Sam Fuld just one game to more than double his spring batting average. In a 6-3 win over the Florida Marlins, the “defensive specialist” went 3/3 with a double, 2 RBIs, and a stolen base, boosting his batting average from .091 to a more palatable .200. Fuld, who was acquired from the Chicago Cubs during the off-season, is fighting for a spot on the Rays’ opening-day roster.

Minnesota Twins 3B Danny Valencia continued his hot streak, going 2/2 in a 4-3 triumph over the New York Mets. Valencia, who finished 3rd in last year’s A.L. Rookie of the Year voting, is hitting .393 with 4 doubles, 1 HR, 5 RBIs, and a .452 on-base percentage.

Texas Rangers 2B Ian Kinsler doubled, stole a base, and scored 2 runs in an 11-10 loss to the Colorado Rockies. In an early display of power and speed that were largely absent during his injury-plagued 2010 season, Kinsler is hitting .378 with 4 doubles, 5 HRs, 9 RBIs, 3 stolen bases, and a .477 slugging percentage.

Boston Red Sox RF Ryan Kalish singled, walked, and stole his 3rd base of the spring in a 4-3 loss to the Atlanta Braves. Coming off his rookie season, Kalish is batting .238 with 1 double, 1 RBI, and a .319 on-base percentage.

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Daily highlights

JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS — Here are your Daily Highlights for Tuesday (3/15/2011):

New York Mets 1B Ike Davis went 2/3 with 3 RBIs in a 5-2 win over the Washington Nationals, stroking a two-run double and an RBI single. Davis, who finished 7th in last year’s N.L. Rookie of the Year voting, is batting .360 in 25 at-bats this spring, with 2 HRs, a team-leading 9 RBIs, and a .484 on-base percentage.

Tampa Bay Rays CF Sam Fuld is hitting just .091 this spring (2/22), but on Tuesday the 29-year-old showed just how productive he can be, scoring 3 runs despite going 0/1 at the plate. In the 4th inning, Fuld walked, stole second, and scored on Evan Longoria’s single. In the 6th, he walked and scored on a double. In the 8th, he got on base due to a fielder’s choice and later scored on a double.

Meanwhile Tuesday, Fuld survived another round of cuts in his bid to make the Rays’ opening-day roste

Los Angeles Dodgers RF Gabe Kapler, another Jewish player seeking an opening-day roster spot, hit a pinch-hit RBI single in the 8th inning to help L.A. beat the Texas Rangers 8-7. In 27 at-bats this spring, Kapler is batting .222 with 3 RBIs.

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Daily highlights

JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS –Here are your highlights for Wednesday, March 9:

For the second day in a row, Boston Red Sox prospect Ryan Lavarnway helped earn his team to victory.

Pinch-hitting for DH David Ortiz, Lavarnway led off the bottom of the 9th inning with a rally-starting single that culminated in a 2-1 victory over the Baltimore Orioles. Who followed Lavarnway with another single? Why, RF Ryan Kalish.

So far this Spring Training, Lavarnway is 3/7 (.429) with a double, HR, and 3 RBIs.

Over in Washington, D.C., Nationals pitcher Jason Marquis continued his encouraging recovery from a dismal 2010 season, earning the win in an 8-4 triumph over the Florida Marlins. In his two starts this Spring Training, Marquis has held opposing batters scoreless all 7 innings, giving up just 3 hits and one walk while striking out 4.

Tampa Bay Rays prospect Sam Fuld went 0/2 in a 4-3 exhibition win over the Netherlands, but he did have the privilege of taking batting-practice swings against Justine Siegal. A seasoned ballplayer, coach and Jew, Siegal made headlines this Spring Training by becoming the first woman to pitch batting practice to a Major-League team.

Eagle-eyed Jewish Baseball News readers may have noticed that today’s Jewish Box Score contained a name we haven’t seen in a while: 2B David Newhan.

Newhan was raised Jewish but adopted Messianic Judaism — a movement that combines Jewish ritual with evangelical Christian ideology — after his inaugural MLB season (1999). He last played Major-League ball with the Houston Astros in 2008 and minor-league ball with the Philadelphia Phillies’ “AAA” team in 2009.

Newhan recently hooked-up with the the San Diego Padres, and on Wednesday he made his first Spring Training appearance since 2009, going 1/2 with a single.

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Daily highlights

JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS –Here are your highlights for Tues., March 8:

Boston Red Sox prospect Ryan Lavarnway didn’t start Tuesday’s split-squad game against the St. Louis Cardinals, but he sure helped finish it.

Lavarnway, a catcher who led all Red Sox farmhands with 102 RBIs in 2010, entered the game as a pinch-hitter for DH David Ortiz in the 6th inning and promptly hit a run-scoring double, trimming the Cards’ lead to 7-4.

When he came to bat again in the 8th inning and the Cards winning 7-6, Lavarnway smacked a two-run HR to put Boston ahead for good.

Until Tuesday’s 2-for-3, 3-RBI performance, Lavarnway was 0-3 in 2011 Spring Training. The hits were his first ever in a Boston uniform.

Lavarnway wasn’t the only Boston Jew to contribute Tuesday. 3B Kevin Youkilis went 1/3 against the Cards, and CF Ryan Kalish hit two singles and a double in Boston’s 3-2 win over the Houston Astros.

Elsewhere, light-hitting OF Sam Fuld singled for the second consecutive game as the Tampa Bay Rays defeated the Toronto Blue Jays 3-2 victory. Fuld, who was profiled in Wednesday’s St. Petersburg Times, is seeking to start the season on a major-league roster for the first time in his career.

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JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS — Spring Training 2011 is just two weeks old. Many players are still shedding their off-season rust. But a couple Jewish players are already tearing the stitching off the ball.

Texas Rangers 2B Ian Kinsler, who was hobbled by injuries last season, leads all MLB players with 4 HRs, is tied for second with 7 RBIs, and is batting .444 (8/18). Figure in walks, and he has a nifty on-base percentage of .545.

Also hitting well is Minnesota Twins 3B Danny Valencia. After finishing 3rd in voting for the A.L. Rookie of the Year award last year, Valencia is batting .500 (6/12) with 3 RBIs and is tied for the A.L. lead in doubles, with four.

Here is how all Jewish position players were doing through Mon., March 7:

 

TEAM
AB H HR RBI BB AVG OBP
Danny Valencia
MIN
12 6 0 3 1 .500 .538
Ian Kinsler
TEX
18 8 4 7 3 .444 .545
Ryan Braun
MIL
11 3 1 2 1 .273 .333
Ike Davis NYM 12 3 1 3 4 .250 .438
Ben Guez
DET
4 1 0 0 3 .250 .571
Gabe Kapler
LAD
15 3 0 1 0 .200 .200
Kevin Youkilis
BOS
13 2 0 1 1 .154 .214
Jason Kipnis
CLE
13 2 1 2 2 .154 .267
Ryan Kalish
TB
16 2 0 0 2 .125 .222
Sam Fuld
TB
9 1 0 0 0 .111 .111
Ryan Lavarnway
BOS
4 0 0 0 0 .000 .000
Jake Lemmerman
LAD
1 0 0 0 0 .000 .000

Among pitchers, Washington Nationals starter Jason Marquis followed up a difficult 2010 with a strong spring-training outing, giving up just 1 hit over 3 innings in his only game played so far. Here’s how all Jewish pitchers were doing through March 7:

 

TEAM
W L ERA G IP H BB SO
Jason Marquis
WSH
0 0 0.00 1 3 1 0 1
Aaron Poreda
SD
0 0 5.40 2 1.2 0 4 1
Michael Schwimer
PHI
0 0 13.50 2 2 4 0 1
John Grabow
CHC
0 0 18.00 1 1 3 0 1
Craig Breslow
OAK
Scott Feldman TEX
Jason Hirsh NYY
David Kopp STL

To track Jewish players in Spring Training, visit Jewish Baseball News for our daily box score.

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Order our bumper sticker for just $2.50 — shipping included! Click on your preferred color below:

Black & White Color
$2.50 $2.50
TEAM
AB H HR RBI BB AVG OBP
Danny Valencia
MIN
12 6 0 3 1 .500 .538
Ian Kinsler
TEX
18 8 4 7 3 .444 .545
Ryan Braun
MIL
11 3 1 2 1 .273 .333
Ike Davis NYM 12 3 1 3 4 .250 .438
Ben Guez
DET
4 1 0 0 3 .250 .571
Gabe Kapler
LAD
15 3 0 1 0 .200 .200
Kevin Youkilis
BOS
13 2 0 1 1 .154 .214
Jason Kipnis
CLE
13 2 1 2 2 .154 .267
Ryan Kalish
TB
16 2 0 0 2 .125 .222
Sam Fuld
TB
9 1 0 0 0 .111 .111
Ryan Lavarnway
BOS
4 0 0 0 0 .000 .000
Jake Lemmerman
LAD
1 0 0 0 0 .000 .000
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