Link-O-Rama: Wakefield slated for back surgery

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* Tim Wakefield had been hoping to join the Red Sox’s playoff roster if they advanced past the ALDS, but now that Boston’s season is over the 43-year-old knuckleballer will undergo surgery this week to repair a herniated disk in his back.
Wakefield struggled down the stretch after returning from the injury, but went 11-3 with a 4.31 ERA in the first half while making the All-Star team and hopes to pitch in 2010.
* After struggling in Game 2 before leaving the team to be present for the birth of his first child, Cole Hamels is ready to make the Game 5 start if the Phillies-Rockies series goes that far.
* Scouting director Dana Brown has left the Nationals to become a special assistant to new Blue Jays general manager Alexander Anthopoulos, so Washington is now interviewing longtime Atlanta scouting director Roy Clark as his replacement.
* Phillies reliever Scott Eyre figures to be unavailable for the rest of the NLDS after leaving Game 3 with a sprained ankle.

Kenley Jansen’s consecutive saves streak ends at 34

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Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen gave up three runs in the top of the ninth inning during Sunday’s game against the Braves, blowing his first save since August 26 last season. He had converted 34 consecutive saves.

Jansen yielded back-to-back singles to lead off the ninth inning, staked to a 4-1 lead. After getting two outs, Matt Adams hit a three-run home run down the right field line to knot the game at four apiece.

After Sunday’s lackluster performance, Jansen is now 24-for-25 in save chances this season with a 1.49 ERA and a 62/2 K/BB ratio in 42 1/3 innings.

Zach Britton sets American League record with 55th consecutive save

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Orioles closer Zach Britton finished Sunday’s 9-7 victory over the Astros with a scoreless ninth inning, earning his sixth save of the season. He has now earned the save in 55 consecutive opportunities dating back to September 2015, setting a new American League record. Tom Gordon previously held the record with 54 consecutive saves. Eric Gagne holds the major league record at 84.

Britton’s last blown save came on September 20, 2015, then converted two more saves before the end of the regular season. He went 47-for-47 in save chances last season and is six-for-six so far this year.

Along with his six saves, Britton has a 2.65 ERA and a 13/8 K/BB ratio in 17 innings this season. The lefty came off the disabled list earlier this month after missing two months with a strained left forearm.