John Maine allowed eight hits and four earned runs over over
five innings in his 2010 debut last week against the Marlins and was
pounded for eight earned over three innings Tuesday night against the Rockies. Needless to say, he has struggled mightily. And now we get this…
ESPN New York’s Adam Rubin heard from a source Wednesday that Maine will retain his spot in the Mets’ rotation for at least one more game, but must be better the next time he takes the mound. The 28-year-old right-hander is scheduled to pitch Sunday night against a tough St. Louis lineup, so we’ll get an idea of where he stands in just a few days.
Manager Jerry Manuel went on New York-based WFAN this afternoon to confirm the report and then the two shared a 35-minute closed-door conversation soon after. Maine has promised to change his philosophy on the mound and believes he will find more success if he simply relies more heavily on his fastball. He’s off to an 0-1 start this year with a 13.50 ERA and 2.38 WHIP through eight innings.
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.