Adam LaRoche and Andy LaRoche both homered last night against the Twins, becoming the first brothers to do so in the same game for the Pirates since Hall of Famers Lloyd and Paul Waner in 1938.
The Waner boys
are among the best brother combos in baseball history, combining for
5,611 hits and two of my favorite nicknames. Paul was “Big Poison” and
Lloyd was “Little Poison” because a fan in New York one day decided to
heckle them as “Big and Little Person” with an accent too thick to
completely understand. Seriously.
In other brother news, Jered Weaver of the Angels and Jeff Weaver of the Dodgers are scheduled to face off Saturday for the first time. MLB.com notes
that 20 pairs of pitching brothers have matched up against each other
throughout baseball history, with the most recent coming in 2002 with
Andy Benes and Alan Benes.
Jered is obviously the superior Weaver right now, ranking second in
the AL with a 2.08 ERA while his brother is merely making a spot start
in place of the injured Eric Milton, but once upon a time Jeff was
nearly as promising. Here are the Weaver’s respective numbers through
the age of 25:
IP ERA SO9 BB9
Jered 461 3.71 7.3 2.6
Jeff 793 4.30 6.1 2.5
Jeff fell apart in his age-26 season by going 7-9 with a 5.99 ERA
following a trade to the Yankees and has posted a 5.03 ERA overall
after the age of 25, whereas Jered is currently 7-2 with a 2.08 ERA as
a 26-year-old and appears destined for a much more successful career.
The story of the Indians postseason cannot be told without talking about injuries to starting pitchers Carlos Carrasco and Danny Salazar. They have forced Terry Francona to lean even harder on his bullpen than he otherwise may have and have cause the Indians to press rookie Ryan Merritt into service.
But Cleveland will be getting at least one of their starters back: Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway that Danny Salazar will be part of the World Series roster.
Salazar has not pitched since early September due to a strained right flexor muscle, but according to Callaway, Salazar is ready to throw 65-70 pitches in a game. That could mean a start, probably in Game 4 after Corey Kluber, Trevor Bauer and Josh Tomlin. Merritt was a possible Game 4 starter, but he could either pair up with Salazar in a tandem start or serve in long relief.
Cubs’ left fielder Kyle Schwarber missed virtually the entire 2016 season due to torn knee ligaments, but he has been working his way back to health more quickly than initially expected. Indeed, he has been playing for the Cubs in the Arizona Fall League, serving as a DH. Many have speculated that the Cubs will activate him for the World Series.
Today, at his World Series media session, Cubs manager Joe Maddon said that reports from Arizona are good on Schwarber and that the he will fly to Cleveland to join the team after tonight’s game in Arizona. Maddon says the team will make a decision on activating him once he arrives. The Cubs have until tomorrow morning to set their World Series roster.
Our guess is that Schwarber will get the call and will serve as the DH for the Cubs in Games 1, 2 and, if necessary, 6 and 7 in Cleveland. If so, a lost season could very quickly turn into a storybook season for the Cubs’ young slugger.