Link-O-Rama: Strasburg, Strawberry, Yost, Acta

Leave a comment

* No. 1 overall pick Stephen Strasburg will make his Arizona Fall League debut today after pitching five innings for the Nationals’ instructional league team. Barring any injuries, Strasburg seems like a near-lock to be in Washington to stay by the middle of next season.
* Darryl Strawberry will be a contestant on the upcoming season of Celebrity Apprentice, where he’ll compete against the likes of Sharon Osbourne, Sinbad, Cyndi Lauper, and Bret Michaels, plus several people who push the limits of the word “celebrity.” Looking over the respective rosters, there were probably more famous people on the 1986 Mets.
* Fired by the Brewers with a dozen games remaining in 2008, Ned Yost interviewed yesterday for the Astros’ managerial opening. He’s among 10 candidates for the Houston job.
* Meanwhile, the Indians conducted a phone interview earlier this week with former Nationals manager Manny Acta, who said afterward that he’s “excited and honored” to be in the mix for the job.

Astros’ bullpen throws combined one-hitter for MLB-best 30th win

Bob Levey/Getty Images
Leave a comment

The Astros’ bullpen did yeoman’s work in place of the injured Dallas Keuchel on Monday against the Tigers. Keuchel is temporarily sidelined with a pinched nerve in his neck.

Brad Peacock made the spot start, limiting the Tigers to one hit and two walks with eight strikeouts over 4 1/3 innings. Chris Devenski took over with one out in the fifth, finishing out that inning as well as the sixth and seventh, facing the minimum. Will Harris pitched a perfect eighth and Ken Giles closed out the 1-0 victory in the ninth. Devenski, Harris, and Giles each had two strikeouts.

The Astros scored their only run in the bottom of the first inning as George Springer drew a leadoff walk, then scored on Jose Altuve‘s one-out double. Tigers starter Brad Fulmer pitched well enough to win on most days, giving up the lone run in seven frames.

After Monday’s win, the Astros became the first team to reach 30 wins, sitting on a 30-15 record. With a +55 run differential, even their expected record matches up with their actual record.

Brandon Phillips hit his 200th career home run

Justin K. Aller/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Braves second baseman Brandon Phillips became the 337th player in baseball history to hit 200 career home runs, driving a solo home run to left-center field during Monday night’s home game against the Pirates. Phillips is the 14th second baseman (who played a min. of 75 percent of his career games at the position) to rack up at least 200 career home runs.

Phillips, 35, entered Monday’s action batting .290/.345/.405 with two home runs and 12 RBI in 142 plate appearances. If he’s anything, he’s consistent, as he finished with an adjusted OPS between 90-99 (100 is average) every year between 2012-16 and it was sitting at 97 coming into Monday.