Since there's no Quadruple Crown in baseball, it will be awfully tough for Miguel Cabrera to top his performance from 2012.
The Detroit slugger puts plenty of pressure on himself to help the Tigers win, but when it comes to individual achievements, his approach is pretty low key.
"I always believe you can be consistent," he said. "I don't know if you're going to get better, but my goal is always to be consistent."
Cabrera has made that look startlingly easy. Last year, he became baseball's first Triple Crown winner in 45 years - and incredibly, his batting average was actually 14 points higher the season before. He's hit below .320 only once in the last eight years, and hit under 30 home runs once in the last nine.
There are no sure things in a sport as fickle as baseball, but Cabrera's contributions are becoming almost routine.
"Taking for granted is probably not the right choice of words, but I know he's going to do good - I'm pretty sure of that," manager Jim Leyland said. "I think you just really gain an appreciation for how good these guys are - major league players - and when you see one that's a special, special player ... we're pretty fortunate."
Braun stands by statement, focuses on baseball: Ryan Braun had already let it be known he was not taking any questions about his reported link to a Florida anti-aging clinic when he faced reporters outside the Milwaukee Brewers' spring training clubhouse on Friday.
Before anyone asked a question, the Brewers slugger repeated the restrictions he'd placed on his first spring meeting with the media.
"I understand why a lot of you guys are probably here but I made a statement last week," Braun said. "I stand behind that statement. I'm not going to address that issue any further. As I stated, I'm happy to cooperate fully into any investigation into this matter."
He did answer one drug-related question, regarding the recent announcement by Major League Baseball and the players union that players will be subject to in-season, unannounced testing for human growth hormone.
"I've always been supportive of the system," Braun said. "I've always been supportive of additional drug testing or whatever testing they have that's available."
Braun's name appears in records from the now-defunct Biogenesis of America LLC clinic that is alleged to have provided performance enhancing substances to several players, including Alex Rodriguez, Gio Gonzalez, Melky Cabrera, Bartolo Colon and Nelson Cruz. Braun was not named in the original report on the clinic in an article in Miami New Times. Braun's ties first were reported by Yahoo Sports.
After his name surfaced, Braun issued a statement saying he had used the clinic's operator, Anthony Bosch, as a consultant during his appeal of his 2011 positive test.
Greinke more comfortable with attention: Anxiety held sway over Zack Greinke since before high school, gnawing at his insides, leaving him with what felt like no escape from his fears.
The dread became worse as attention grew for the star pitcher, reaching a pinnacle seven years ago, when he walked away from baseball.
Now? Barely a blip on his psyche.
Even as he prepares to pitch for the Los Angeles Dodgers, one of baseball's best-known franchises in one of the nation's largest population centers, Greinke can keep anxiety at bay.
"I don't think about it at all. I don't get stressed by it," Greinke said Friday from the Dodgers' spring training facility. "It's just something that was a problem before, but it isn't now."
Anxiety grew for Greinke and boiled over in 2006, when he left the Kansas City Royals during spring training for treatment of social anxiety disorder.
He nearly stayed away for good.
Greinke did return, though, and worked his way back to the majors by September. Three years later, he turned himself into one of the most dominant pitchers in baseball, winning the 2009 AL Cy Young Award.
After a so-so 2010 season, Greinke was traded to Milwaukee and spent two seasons with the Brewers before signing a six-year, $147 million deal with the free-spending Dodgers this offseason.
Cruz shocked name linked to Fla. clinic, PEDs: Texas Rangers slugger Nelson Cruz said Friday it was "shocking" and "depressing" to see his name came up in connection with a Florida clinic now at the center of Major League Baseball's latest drug investigation.
Cruz, however, said he could not shed any light on why his name is reportedly in the records of Biogenesis of America LLC, a now-closed anti-aging clinic in Coral Gables, Fla. The Miami New Times reported last month that it obtained records detailing banned substances purchases by several players, including Cruz, the 2011 AL championship series MVP.
"I want to speak and I want to talk, but my lawyer told me I cannot say anything right now," Cruz said. "I want to be honest, but this is currently under investigation by Major League Baseball."
Cruz said he has not yet met with any MLB investigators, but would cooperate with them.