What’s Happening in Baseball Today

The First Pitch: August 17, 2022

The Phillies become the last of the NL teams established in the 1800s to reach 10,000 wins, flattening the Marlins at Miami, 11-4, behind five home runs including a pair from Rhys Hoskins (see below). While all eight teams have won 10,000, two of them have yet to lose 10,000: The Giants (9,830) and Dodgers (9,926). Meanwhile, over in the American League, only the Yankees (10,693*) have surpassed five-digit territory in franchise wins; the Red Sox (9,776) are next in line to reach. 

* The Yankees’ total above includes 118 from 1901-02, when the franchise was known as the Baltimore Orioles—though there’s been fierce historical debate as to whether the Orioles, who were an absolute mess through sabotage by 1902, simply disbanded and were replaced by a replacement team at New York, rather than just moved.

One of the year’s most anticipated pitching matchups doesn’t quite live up to its billing. In Chicago, the White Sox’ Dylan Cease lasts five innings and concedes three runs to the Astros—ending a record streak of 14 starts in which he allowed no more than one earned run. On the other side, Houston’s Justin Verlander survives for seven innings and allows three runs himself—though the last two come in the seventh on Gavin Sheets’ pinch-hit double to tie the game. After Verlander’s departure, Chicago will notch the ultimate game-winner in the eighth on Yoan Moncada’s RBI single in a 4-3 White Sox victory.

The A’s end their latest long losing streak with a 5-1 victory at Texas as everyone in the starting lineup gets a least one hit while rookie pitcher J.P. Sears—acquired in the Frankie Montas trade with the Yankees—throws five shutout innings to improve to 4-0 with a 1.95 ERA. Oakland came into the game losing nine straight games—the third skid of least nine this season. Only the Reds have lost nine or more games twice in 2022.

The Braves run their win streak up to eight games with a 5-0 beating of the Mets at Atlanta, and lock up another talented player for the long term by signing rookie outfielder Michael Harris II to an extension worth eight years and $72 million. The deal includes two team options that could raise the final total to 10 years and $107 million. The 21-year-old Harris has been outstanding since debuting on May 28; in 71 games, he’s batting .287 with 14 doubles, 12 homers, 39 RBIs and 13 steals without once getting caught.

With Harris’ signing, the Braves have can claim the core of their team, at least offensively, through 2027, with Harris, Ronald Acuna Jr., Austin Riley, Matt Olson and Ozzie Albies all in the fold during that time.

Congrats, Your Box Score Line Was the Best (Hitters Edition)

6-2-3-5—Rhys Hoskins, Philadelphia
The 29-year-old slugger from Sacramento enjoyed his third multi-homer game of 2022, adding a single and even his second steal of the season as the Phillies romped over the Marlins at Miami, 11-4. Hoskins, who has played all but one game this year, is on pace for a career-high 36 homers.

Congrats, Your Box Score Line Was the Best (Pitchers Edition)

7-1-0-0-3-6—Nick Pivetta, Boston
As an up-and-down Red Sox club has struggled around the .500 mark, the sixth-year right-hander has pretty much toed the even-steven line. With one of his better performances of the year against the Pirates—whose lineup Red Sox broadcaster Dennis Eckersley described as a “hodgepodge of nothingness”—Pivetta evened his season record to 9-9; his next win will set a career high.

How Much is Mickey 1952 Worth Today? Try $6,550,000

A mint-condition 1952 Topps card of Mickey Mantle, considered one of the most-sought after sports cards, is being auctioned online through August 27. We’ll keep a daily tab on what the current high bid is, just in case any of you are saving up the money to be the winning bid. The bidding seems to have cooled, with the current high bid inching more slowly toward the record fee paid for a 1909 Honus Wagner card; the value of that card was at $6.6 million when the Mantle auction began, but was upped at the beginning of August when one sold for $7.2 million. Can Mantle overtake Wagner? Stay tuned here.

It Was Whatever-Something Years Ago Today

2008: The Rangers’ Josh Hamilton is the recipient of the fifth intentional walk granted with the bases loaded in major league history. Marlon Byrd next strikes out to end a 7-4 loss to Tampa Bay.

Shameless Link of the Day

The Mets’ Max Scherzer takes the mound tonight to try and stop the Braves’ eight-game winning streak. Speaking of the number eight, that’s how many strikeouts Scherzer needs to tie Pedro Martinez for #13 on the all-time list. Here’s where Martinez himself stands on our list of the Red Sox’ greatest pitchers.

You Say It’s Your Birthday

Seattle outfielder Jesse Winker is 29; 2008 AL MVP Dustin Pedroia is 39; 2000s Phillies pitcher Brett Myers is 42; 14-year reliever Chad Qualls is 44; MLB’s last 20-game loser (from 2003) Mike Maroth is 45; five-time All-Star catcher Jorge Posada is 52; Baltimore boomer Boog Powell is 81; 1970 AL ERA leader Diego Segui is 85. Born on this date is Giants infielder/coach/manager and TGG interview subject Jim Davenport (1933) and Hank Greenberg slugging sidekick Rudy York (1913).

To Whom It May Concern

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