What’s Happening in Baseball Today
August 11, 2020: The First Pitch
Cleveland pitchers are apparently getting a little fidgety in their hotel rooms—if they’re there, that is. A day after Zach Plesac was sent home for violating the Indians’ COVID-19 safety protocols, Mike Clevinger was docked a start when it was learned that he joined Plesac in visiting some friends in Chicago over the past weekend.
The Mets’ Marcus Stroman is the latest mid-season opt-out, deciding that he’ll sit out the year—even as he neared his first start of the shortened campaign after recovering from a torn calf muscle. The pitcher is the second big loss for the Mets in as many weeks, following the departure of slugger Yoenis Cespedes. Meanwhile, the Mets got hammered by the visiting Nationals, 16-4.
The Diamondbacks outlasted the Rockies at Coors Field, 12-8, despite four more hits by Colorado’s Charlie Blackmon, who’s hitting .484 through the team’s first 16 games of the season. Blackmon already has five games with at least three hits; he led the majors last year with 21 such games.
The Rangers decided to open Globe Life Field’s retractable roof for the first time this season, because they were “curious” as to how the game would play on the field. Not surprisingly, warmer weather—it’s 95 degrees at first pitch—heated up the offense, as the visiting Mariners trashed Texas, 10-2. Seattle’s three home runs—including the fourth of the year from rookie Kyle Lewis, who’s hitting .373—were one less than those accumulated by opponents over the first eight games at the Rangers’ new yard, while the 12 total runs and 23 total hits were both the most collected in any game yet at the ballpark.
Houston’s Lance McCullers Jr. took a no-hitter into the seventh against the visiting Giants and settled for seven frames of one-hit shutout ball, as the Astros repelled a late comeback bid by San Francisco and triumph, 6-4.
Congrats, Your Box Score Line Was the Best (Hitters Edition)
4-3-4-5—Asdrubal Cabrera, Washington Nationals
The veteran infielder was a late-season revelation for the Nationals last year, hitting .323 with six homers and 40 RBIs over just 38 games after a trade from Texas. With a gargantuan two homer-two double night at New York against the Mets, Cabrera appears to be keeping the momentum going, as he’s now hitting .357 on the year.
Congrats, Your Box Score Line Was the Best (Pitchers Edition)
8-2-1-1-1-10—Aaron Nola, Philadelphia Phillies
After a bit of a stumble last season, the Phillies ace appears to be firmly back on track with one of his finest efforts yet, quelling the Braves before the bullpen took over in the ninth and threatened to cough up a 12-run lead. As it was, the 13-8 victory was Nola’s first of the year.
It Was Whatever-Something Years Ago Today
1961: Warren Spahn earns his 300th career win, going the distance in the Milwaukee Braves’ 2-1 win over the Cubs. The crowd of 40,000 is the largest the Braves will see at County Stadium before moving to Atlanta five years later.
1986: Just six days before playing what will be the final game of his career, Pete Rose collects five hits—a double and four singles—in the Reds’ 13-4 loss to the Giants at Cincinnati. It’s the 10th career five-hit game for the 45-year-old Rose, tying a National League record.
1994: Ken Griffey Jr. belts his 40th home run and Randy Johnson goes the distance, scattering a run on four hits while striking out 15, to defeat the A’s 8-1 at Oakland in what will be the last game of the 1994 season; the next day, the players go on strike, beginning a work stoppage that will last through the following April.
2016: Colorado’s David Dahl makes it 17 games with a hit to start a career, tying Chuck Aleno’s 1941 rookie record as the Rockies outlast the Rangers at Texas, 12-9. Dahl will go hitless the next day to end the streak.
Shameless TGG Link of the Day
The Blue Jays “host” the Marlins in the first regular season major league game played in the city of Buffalo since 1915, when the Buffalo Blues participated in the eight-team Federal League. Here’s how that short-lived third circuit came to an end.
You Say It’s Your Birthday
The Giants’ Pablo Sandoval is 34; former Giant (and 2014 steroid cheat) Melky Cabrera is 36; ex-Montreal Expos pitcher Bryn Smith is 65. Born on this date is borderline Cooperstown candidate Vada Pinson (1938), pitcher of many teams Bobo Newsom (1907), and 1900s Philadelphia A’s standout Danny Murphy (1876).
Welcome to the New This Great Game
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