Philosophical question: if a routine fly ball lands untouched in the outfield, does it make a sound?
Yoenis Cespedes: On Sunday in Phoenix, the answer is "yes," and the sound was from the groans of Oakland A's fans watching Yoenis Cespedes struggle with the high desert sky. Cespedes had a game he'd like to forget against the White Sox, going 0-for-3 with three strikeouts and misplaying two fly balls: one that he completely lost and that landed 20 feet behind him, bouncing over the wall for a ground-rule double; and another that casually bounced off his glove on the warning track for an error.
If not for Cespedes' gaffes, fans would not have suffered the indignity of a 2-2 Spring Training tie. Dan Straily and Erik Johnson dueled with a pair of nice performances. Straily was pulled in the fourth after three-plus innings of shutout ball. Johnson went four strong, allowed a single run and striking out five.
Erik Johnson: I have to admit that I didn't know much about Erik Johnson before this game. I liked what I saw. He's a big guy, standing 6'3" and weighing 235 pounds, and he has a commanding mound presence. He mixed in a nasty slider with his fastball and eased through a lineup full of Oakland's regulars. I can't get TOO excited over one four-inning outing, but Johnson is a player who just jumped onto my fantasy radar as someone to target at the end of my fantasy rotation.
Also in this game: Brandon Moss beat an extreme infield shift with a perfect bunt to third base . . . I saw my first balk of the spring by the A's Tommy Milone (not as exciting) . . . Josh Donaldson hit a long homer to straight-away center. White Sox center fielder Adam Eaton could only watch it and admire. . . Milone tossed four innings and allowed two unearned runs (thanks, Yoenis!)
Today (Monday) I will be back in Scottsdale to see the Cubs and Giants from the beautiful Charro Lodge in right field.
Stay tuned for more daily updates from Arizona as RotoBaller Scott Slezak provides your daily Cactus League fantasy baseball analysis.