On-Base Perception

Newsday's new all-encompassing baseball blog on the Yankees, Mets, MLB and more from around the sport.

What we've learned one month into the MLB season

Yu Darvish walks through the dugout after pitching

(Credit: Getty Images)

One month into the season, we’ve learned quite a few interesting facts about some contenders:

The pen is not mightier

The Cardinals are one of the top teams in baseball once again this season. After winning the World Series in 2011 and making it to Game 7 of the National League Championship Series against the eventual World Champion Giants last year, St. Louis is now a half-game out...

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Vidal Nuno makes MLB debut for Yankees

Vidal Nuno makes his major league debut in

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

Buried in the Yankees’ embarrassing 9-1 loss to the lowly Astros on Monday night was a glimpse of what could turn out to be a bright spot for the organization. Left-hander Vidal Nuno took the mound to start the seventh inning, making his MLB debut, and worked three shutout innings to finish the game, allowing four hits, no walks and striking out two.

He threw 38 pitches, 28 for strikes, and...

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Chris Nelson could be option for Yankees to replace Kevin Youkilis

Chris Nelson hits an RBI single in the

(Credit: AP)

If Kevin Youkilis hits the disabled list with the back issues that have led him to play in only one game since April 20, the Yankees have some options on the open market to replace him.

Internally, the organization is light on infielders. Injuries to Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez have exposed this area of shallow depth, forcing Jayson Nix and Eduardo Nunez into more prominent action than...

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David Wright out with muscle spasms in neck

David Wright is seen in the dugout after

(Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

MIAMI -- If the Mets snap their season-long four-game losing streak on Monday night against the Marlins, it will have to be without star third baseman David Wright, who is dealing with muscle spasms in his neck.

The club is hoping that Wright is just day to day, though he has yet to be examined by doctors, manager Terry Collins said during his pregame media briefing.

With virtually the...

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Inside John Buck's hot start for the Mets

John Buck hits a second-inning solo home run

(Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

The Mets knew they were getting a potential star catcher back when they traded R.A. Dickey to Toronto in December. They just didn't expect it to be John Buck.

Buck, a 32-year-old career .236 hitter who'd already been traded once last offseason, was more of a throw-in on the deal that brought catching prospect Travis d'Arnaud to the Mets.

Yet one month into the season, Buck is flourishing...

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Yankees' Francisco Cervelli breaks hand, Ivan Nova injures right elbow vs. Blue Jays

New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi takes out

(Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

Yankees catcher Francisco Cervelli has suffered a broken hand against the Blue Jays and will miss approximately six weeks for surgery, Newsday's David Lennon reports.

Cervelli broke his hand on a foul tip in the first inning. Cervelli was pulled from the game in the top of the first after maganer Joe Girardi and trainer Steve Donohue checked out Cervelli's hand.

The Yankees reportedly...

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Yu Darvish and the greatest GIF ever

Texas Rangers starting pitcher Yu Darvish, of Japan,

(Credit: AP)

This GIF has been making the web rounds today, showing Yu Darvish throwing all five of his pitches at once.

The wind-up and delivery for each of his pitches have been superimposed on top of each other to make it appear as if he's throwing five baseballs.

On that level alone it's pretty mind blowing, but then there's the crazy movement that Darvish is able to achieve on his pitches, made...

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Niese still on track to pitch on Sunday

Jonathon Niese is attended to after being hit

(Credit: Mike Stobe)

Mets pitcher Jonathon Niese will stay on his regular routine. That's a good sign two days after he left a start early, forced out when he took a comebacker off the lower portion of his right leg.

Niese intended to throw a bullpen session on Thursday though he had considered bumping the it back a day to Friday. In either case, Niese has remained confident about making his next start on time....

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Collins: Duda in cleanup just 'for today'

The Mets' Lucas Duda follows through on a

(Credit: AP)

Ike Davis and Lucas Duda have started the season on opposite ends of spectrum. While Davis has endured another slow start to the year, Duda has flourished.

But on Thursday, the two traded places in the starting lineup, with Duda moving into the cleanup spot while Davis was dropped to sixth. Manager Terry Collins said on Sunday that coaches discussed a possible swap but decided against it for...

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Jonathon Niese planning on making next start

Jonathon Niese reacts after giving up an RBI

(Credit: Mike Stobe)

A few notes before the undefeated Matt Harvey faces the Dodgers:

-- Lefthander Jonathon Niese said he's on track to make his next scheduled start on Sunday. Niese left his start on Tuesday when he took a comebacker off his lower right leg, leaving him with what the team called a contusion. Niese may push his normal bullpen back to Friday, and he might throw an abbreviated session, though he...

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