SARASOTA, Fla. (AP) — Don’t tell Chris Davis that home runs in the Grapefruit League don’t count.
Coming off a couple of seasons so poor that he considered retirement, the Baltimore Orioles slugger kept up his spring power surge with a three-homer against Miami on Saturday, his third longball in four games.
“I’ll take them in exhibition, spring training, winter ball, whenever,” Davis said. “Especially after the way the last two years have gone. I’ve got plenty of baseball left to give.”
Davis turns 34 next month and is in the middle of a $161 million, seven-year deal. He got that contract after twice leading the majors in home runs.
In 2018, Davis hit only .168 with 16 home runs and 49 RBIs, striking out 192 times in 128 games. Last season didn’t go much better when he batted .179 with 12 homers and 36 RBIs in 105 games.
Davis also became known for a mighty slump — he began the season hitless in his first 33 at-bats, extending an overall 0-for-54 skid.
“It’s nice to see some results,” Davis said. “I would like to get off to a good start just for peace of mind, especially after struggling the past couple years.”
“Having some success on the baseball field feels good. But it’s still spring training. It’s still early. There are still a lot of things I have to accomplish, things I want to accomplish and things I still need to work on.”
Elsewhere around the Grapefruit and Cactus leagues:
YANKEES (SS) 8, TIGERS 2
New York star Aaron Judge has undergone an MRI and further tests as the team tries to determine the cause of his ailing right shoulder. Manager Aaron Boone feels the slugging right fielder could be ready for the start of the season if he’s able to play in games over the final 10 days or so at spring training.
Gleyber Torres hit a three-run homer and Gerrit Cole pitched 2 2/3 scoreless innings for the Yankees, allowing two hits with two strikeouts.
Matthew Boyd made his second start for Detroit, striking out four in three shutout innings.
YANKEES (SS) 5, RED SOX 2
Jordan Montgomery made his first start for New York’s split squad, giving up a hit in two scoreless innings while striking out four. Gio Urshela doubled and walked, scoring twice.
Eduardo Rodriguez was stellar in his first start for Boston, striking out six in three shutout innings.
CARDINALS 6, NATIONALS 3
Carlos Martinez issued three walks and nothing else, pitching three shutout innings with four strikeouts in a start for St. Louis. Paul DeJong hit his second spring home run. Dylan Carlson, the Cardinals’ top prospect, doubled and singled, scoring two runs.
Patrick Corbin made his first start for Washington, allowing one run on a hit and two walks in two innings. Luis Garcia, just 19 years old and already one of the Nationals’ top prospects, hit a two-run homer.
METS 2, ASTROS 1
Steven Matz threw two scoreless innings for New York. NL Rookie of the Year Pete Alonso went 0 for 3, striking out twice and leaving his average at .067.
Framber Valdez, competing for a rotation spot, allowed two hits and two walks, pitching 2 2/3 innings and striking out four.
BLUE JAYS 6, PHILLIES 5
Danny Jansen hit a two-run homer and singled for Toronto. Ruben Tejada added a two-run homer.
Newcomer Zack Wheeler started for Philadelphia, yielding two runs — on Jansen’s homer — in two innings. Logan Forsythe hit his second home run.
ORIOLES 12, MARLINS 6
Trey Mancini and Anthony Santander each had two hits for Baltimore.
Ace Sandy Alcantara struggled for a second straight start, surrendering five runs on five hits and four walks and retiring just five batters.
BREWERS 4, CUBS 3
Pitching for the first time since signing a $15.5 million, five-year contract, Freddy Peralta allowed a walk over three no-hit innings and struck out three for Milwaukee.
Logan Morrison hit a three-run homer and Orlando Arcia also connected.
Cubs starter Yu Darvish gave up a home run to Arcia on his first pitch of the spring, then settled in to retire six of the next seven batters he faced. His fastball reached 98 mph and he struck out three without a walk.
PADRES 7, REDS 3
Dinelson Lamet allowed a hit and a walk while striking out three over two innings in the start for the Padres. Jason Vosler, a non-roster invitee who compiled a .890 OPS at Triple-A El Paso last season, hit his first home run of the spring and has hit safely in 7 of his 11 at-bats after going 3 for 4.
Cincinnati starter Luis Castillo struck out four of the six batters he retired over two innings, but also gave up a run on four hits.
DODGERS (SS) 7, DIAMONDBACKS 4
Mookie Betts singled and stole second, and Justin Turner had two hits and drove in a pair of runs for Los Angeles. Swingman Ross Stripling, who debuted a new changeup in his spring debut Monday, allowed one hit over two innings in his second start.
Arizona starter Taylor Clarke gave up seven runs on six hits over 2 2/3 innings. Trayce Thompson homered.
ATHLETICS (SS) 8, INDIANS (SS) 6
Tony Kemp had three hits and Matt Chapman drove in two runs for the A’s. Sean Manaea allowed two earned runs and struck out two.
Francisco Lindor singled and doubled and Michael Bradley homered for the second time this spring. Cleveland starter Zach Plesac struck out three over 2 1/3 innings.
ATHLETICS (SS) 8, INDIANS (SS) 7
Robbie Grossman hit a three-run homer for Oakland and Paul Blackburn struck out two over three scoreless innings in the start.
Carlos Santana and Mike Freeman each had two hits for Cleveland.
ANGELS 10, GIANTS 3
Justin Upton doubled and drove in two runs and Jason Castro homered for the Angels. Dylan Bundy retired all six batters he faced in the start, three by strikeout.
In his second start of the spring, Drew Smyly allowed an infield single and struck out two in two scoreless innings for the Giants. Wilmer Flores doubled and singled.
RANGERS 7, WHITE SOX 6
Ronald Guzman and Blake Swihart each homered for Texas.
Eloy Jimenez homered and Jaycob Brugman hit a three-run shot for the White Sox. Drew Anderson struck out two, walked two and allowed three hits in two innings.
DODGERS (SS) 14, ROCKIES 2
Walker Buehler retired six straight batters, striking out two, in a clean two-inning start for the Dodgers. Cody Thomas homered twice and Austin Barnes added a three-run shot.
Elias Diaz tripled and Bret Boswell doubled for the Rockies.
ROYALS 9, MARINERS 6
Ryan McBroom doubled and Kyle Isbel homered for the Royals. Khalil Lee doubled and drove in two runs. Stephen Woods Jr. started but could not make it out of the first inning, walking three and giving up two hits with one strikeout.
Marco Gonzales worked three innings, allowing one hit and striking out two. Collin Cowgill homered as he tries to return to the big leagues for the first time since 2016.
PIRATES 2, TWINS 0
Minnesota starter Jose Berrios allowed one hits in three shutout innings. Pittsburgh starter Derek Holland gave up two hits in 2 2/3 scoreless innings.
BRAVES 12, RAYS 0
Max Fried threw 2 2/3 innings in a start for Atlanta. Adam Duvall drove in two runs and Austin Riley had two hits and scored twice.
Tampa Bay starter Yonny Chirinos gave up five runs in two innings.
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