With closer Bobby Jenks struggling Ozzie Guillen said before last night’s game that he’d go with matchups in the ninth inning, but Jenks ended up getting the save anyway after Guillen used southpaw Matt Thornton in the eighth inning versus left-handed hitters Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau.
Thornton may have gotten the save chance had Minnesota’s big lefty bats been up in the ninth inning instead, but clearly Jenks hasn’t totally lost his grip on the job. And clearly he thinks that’s the way it should be, because here’s what Jenks had to say about the whole situation after notching his sixth save of the season:
That’s the thing I don’t understand, all the stuff going on. I mean it’s one game. Everyone is hitting the panic button in f***ing April. Chill out. I don’t want to say everything I want to say, but it was one bad game. The game before that I gave up a solo home run, the wind is blowing out 20 mph, what are you going to do? I really don’t want to comment on it too much because I really don’t want to start anything, but it was one game. It was one f***ing game. Things happen.
I’m not normally someone who sticks up for White Sox, but Jenks is absolutely right. He’s no longer the elite, dominant closer he was a few years ago and may pitch himself out of the job at some point, but he certainly hasn’t done it yet with just one blown save in seven tries and 17 strikeouts in 13 innings.
I also liked this Jenks quote, about giving up a double to former teammate Jim Thome last night: “He keeps doing that, I know where he lives. I’ll just toilet paper his house.”
It was assumed already, but Mike Scioscia made it official during Monday’s press conference for new general manager Billy Eppler that he will return as Angels manager in 2016.
Scioscia, the longest-tenured manager in the majors, has been at the helm with the Angels since 2000. There was a clause in his contract which allowed him to opt out after the 2015 season, but he has decided to stay put. He still has three years and $15 million on his contract, which runs through 2018.
Jerry Dipoto resigned as Angels general manager in July amid tension with Scioscia, so there were naturally questions today about what to expect with first-time GM Eppler in the fold. According to David Adler of MLB.com, Scioscia isn’t concerned.
“I think we’re going to mesh very well,” Scioscia said. “If we adjust, or maybe he adjusts to some of the things, there’s going to be collaboration that’s going to make us better.”
Eppler is the fourth general manager during Scioscia’s tenure with the team.
After winning the AL West last season, the Angels finished 85-77 this season and narrowly missed the playoffs. The team hasn’t won a postseason game since 2009.
Astros center fielder Carlos Gomez sat out the final series of the regular season in order to rest a strained left intercostal muscle, but there was good news coming out of a workout today in advance of Tuesday’s Wild Card game vs. the Yankees.
This has been a lingering issue for Gomez, who missed 13 straight games with the injury last month. He aggravated the strain on a throw to home plate last Wednesday and was forced to sit while the Astros fought to keep their season alive. Astros manager A.J. Hinch told reporters last week that Gomez’s injury would typically take 45-50 days to recover from, so it’s fair to wonder how productive he can be during the postseason.
Gomez mostly struggled after coming over from the Brewers at the trade deadline, batting .242 with four home runs and a .670 OPS over 41 games.