Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com suggests that the Yankees could soon make a move with right-hander Chad Gaudin, who has struggled to an 8.68 ERA in 9 1/3 innings this spring.
Gaudin, who turns 27 later this week, agreed to a one-year, $2.95 million contract in January, however like teammate Sergio Mitre, who inked a one-year, $850,000 contract with the club, his deal is non-guaranteed.
This means the Yankees could cut either pitcher without being responsible for their 2010 salary. (Correction: That’s not exactly true. Rosenthal adds that the Yankees would owe Gaudin one-fourth of his 2010 salary, or $737,500. I’d think this would increase the chance that the Yankees will look for a trade partner.) While Gaudin has struggled during exhibition action, Mitre has been very solid, posting a 3.21 ERA and 14/3 K/BB ratio in 14 innings. Both were in the running for a rotation spot, but it’s becoming pretty clear that they are more likely to hang on as a long reliever or spot starter, if at all.
While Gaudin has a fantastic shot to win with the Bombers, he’d be able to start every fifth day for any number of teams. I’ll throw the Mets, Dodgers and Mariners out there as early possibilities if he’s cut loose.
Angels DH Albert Pujols passed Mark McGwire for sole possession of 10th place on baseball’s all-time home run leaderboard, slugging his 584th career home run in the first inning of Wednesday night’s game against the Blue Jays.
Mike Trout had already slugged a solo home run off of Jays starter Marco Estrada to bring Pujols to the dish. Pujols jumped on an 0-1 cut fastball, sending it out to left-center field, clearing the fence by a few feet.
Pujols, who finished 4-for-4 with the homer and an RBI double, is batting .257/.321/.441 with 24 home runs and 99 RBI on the year. His next target on the home run leaderboard is Frank Robinson at 586.
Orioles closer Zach Britton had appeared in a major league record 43 consecutive games without allowing an earned run, spanning May 5 to August 22. That streak came to an end on Wednesday evening against the Nationals.
The Orioles entered the bottom of the ninth inning holding a 10-3 lead, but reliever Parker Bridwell immediately found himself in hot water. He yielded back-to-back singles to Danny Espinosa and Clint Robinson. He was able to strike out Trea Turner, but walked Jayson Werth to load the bases. Daniel Murphy then crushed his first career grand slam to make it a 10-7 game. That prompted manager Buck Showalter to bring in Britton.
Britton, too, was knocked around. He served up a single to Bryce Harper, followed by a double to Anthony Rendon that scored Harper, pushing the score to 10-8 and ending Britton’s streak. Wilson Ramos reached on a fielder’s choice back to Britton, but the lefty finally finished the game by getting Ryan Zimmerman to ground into a game-ending 4-6-3 double play.
Britton now holds a nice 0.69 ERA with 38 saves and a 61/16 K/BB ratio in 52 innings of work this season.