THREE THINGS I THINK: 1. I must admit I’m a little worried about the offense. The Hens are last in the IL with a team batting average of .194, although five teams have scored fewer runs through five games. I’ll be a little less worried when guys like Quintin Berry (.154), John Lindsey (0-for-10) and Danny Worth (.083) get rolling. Good news: It's an extremely small sample size. 2. The Mud Hens rotation has surprised me with the innings it has covered early in the season. Getting six innings from Duane Below and seven from Shawn Hill means they will round into form shortly – and that will be a plus for the bullpen. 3. Was anyone else surprised when Jess Todd claimed the first save of the season instead of Bruce Rondon? I would guess part of the reason Rondon didn’t close is that it would have been his third appearance in four days, but it’s still good to know someone else in the bullpen can close games.
WHO’S HOT: 1B Jordan Lennerton has hit .300 in the team’s first four games and also has four walks for a .467 on-base percentage. … IF Gustavo Nunez also started the season 3-for-10 and also has one of the team’s two stolen bases … In his first two appearances RHP Jose Ortega has allowed just two hits and one walks while fanning two in three scoreless innings. … LHP Kenny Faulk has given up just one hit with no walks in 1.2 scoreless innings, striking out a pair.
WHO’S NOT: OF Quintin Berry has just two hits in his first 13 at-bats with five strikeouts. … 1B John Lindsey does not have a hit in his first 10 at-bats and has struck out six times. … IF Danny Worth has just one hit in his first 12 at-bats, with six of those at-bats ending with a strikeout. … LHP Casey Crosby struggled in his first start, giving up five hits while walking four in three innings. Crosby gave up six runs in a loss at Louisville. … RHP Luis Marte gave up the game-winning home run on just his second pitch in Thursday’s opener. To his credit, he rebounded with a scoreless inning with a strikeout to earn the win Sunday.
THE WEEK AHEAD: The Mud Hens are on the road for three games in Indianapolis Monday through Wednesday, April 8-10. Then Toledo returns to Fifth Third Field for the Thursday, April 11, opener against Louisville, which starts at 5 p.m. That is the first of four games the Hens will play against the Bats, with the Friday, April 12, game starting at 7 p.m.; the Saturday, April 13 game beginning at 6 p.m. and the Sunday, April 14 contest starting at 2 p.m.
NEWS WORTH NOTING: The Mud Hens begin this week in fourth place in the International League’s West Division, one game behind Columbus and Indianapolis tied for second and two games in back of the division-leading Bats. … Remember Jeff Kobernus, the Tigers’ Rule 5 pick who was returned to Washington at the end of spring training? Kobernus has begun the season hitting .571 (8-for-14) and is tied for the league lead with three stolen bases and six runs scored. … Thursday’s home opener has been reduced to standing-room only tickets.
LAST WEEK’S TRANSACTIONS: April 3-RHP Evan Reed optioned to Mud Hens from Detroit; RHP Rob Waite was given his unconditional release.