36-year-old free agent Nomar
Garciaparra is “widely expected” to retire, according to Susan Slusser of
the San Francisco Chronicle.
Garciaparra posted a disappointing .281/.314/.388 batting line with three home runs and 16 RBI in 160 at-bats as a backup corner infielder for the A’s last season. He’s a major injury risk and is no longer a reliable defensive infielder, even at first base. Par for the course, he has not been linked to any teams this offseason.
Nomar spent 13 seasons in the big leagues, starting in Boston and making stops with Chicago (Cubs), Los Angeles (Dodgers) and finally Oakland. If he is indeed retiring, the California native will finish with a stellar .313/.361/.521 career batting line, 229 career home runs and 1,747 career hits. Garciaparra won the Rookie of the Year in 1997 and was voted to six All-Star games.
He’s widely regarded as one of the classiest guys in the business and he no doubt has a stack of after-baseball opportunities available to him. But Nomar might prefer to spend the next chapter of his life driving his overly athletic kids to baseball, basketball, football, soccer, lacrosse, hockey, and maybe even slamball practice. Don’t let John Calipari near those children. He’d have them in Kentucky gear by age 10.
Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas belted his 37th home run on Wednesday evening, setting a new club record for homers in a single season. Moustakas had been tied with Steve Balboni, who hit 36 home runs in 1985.
The home run came on a 2-0, 82 MPH slider from Blue Jays reliever Carlos Ramirez, boosting the Royals’ lead to 13-0 in the top of the sixth inning.
Moustakas, 29, entered the night batting .271/.313/.523 with 82 RBI and 71 runs scored in 560 plate appearances.
Red Sox starter Chris Sale recorded his 300th strikeout of the 2017 season on Wednesday night against the Orioles. The momentous occasion occurred with two outs in the eighth inning. Facing Ryan Flaherty, Sale threw a slider that caught the strike zone low and inside for called strike three.
Sale and Clayton Kershaw (2015) are the only pitchers to strikeout 300-plus batters in a season in the last 15 years. Curt Schilling and Randy Johnson accomplished the feat in 2002, and Johnson also did it in 2001 and 2000. Pedro Martinez had been the only other Red Sox pitcher to have a 300-strikeout season.
Through eight scoreless innings, Sale limited the Orioles to four hits with no walks and 13 strikeouts. The Red Sox offense gave him plenty of run support. Mookie Betts and Devin Marrero each hit two-run home runs in the fourth. Hanley Ramirez added a two-run double in the sixth and Dustin Pedroia hit a two-run double of his own in the eighth to make it 8-0.