Top five Grapefruit League, Cactus League story lines

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By Dave Sheinin
Monday, February 14, 2011; 7:45 PM

FIVE STORY LINES OF SPRING: THE GRAPEFRUIT LEAGUE

Philly's historic rotation

Does the star-studded quartet of Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, Roy Oswalt and Cole Hamels guarantee a title? No, but it means that roughly four out of every five days, their starter is better than yours.

Whither Pujols?

It's Armageddon in St. Louis, with Albert Pujols's self-imposed start-of-spring-training deadline about to pass with no new contract. He takes a giant step toward free agency after the 2011 season.

Red Sox take aim at Yankees

The great AL East rivalry took on a new dimension this offseason, with the Red Sox scoring big (Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford), and the Yankees mostly failing to keep pace.

Twins' two injured stars

Minnesota's hold on the AL Central may come down to the health of first baseman Justin Morneau (concussion) and closer Joe Nathan (elbow surgery). We will know more very soon.

Orioles' splurge on power

What did the Orioles accomplish by acquiring Mark Reynolds, J.J. Hardy, Derrek Lee and Vladimir Guerrero? They added 75-90 homers to their lineup. . . and about 400-500 strikeouts.

FIVE STORYLINES OF SPRING: THE CACTUS LEAGUE

The champs stand pat

After winning the World Series, the Giants - still a band of castoffs and misfits - open with almost the exact same team, other than a slight upgrade at shortstop with Miguel Tejada.


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