The Yankees ended a 12-game drought against the Yankees Sunday thanks to a go-ahead grand slam in the top of the eighth inning from Jason Kubel. It was his only hit of the game, but it was a big one. Even more impressive, he hit the slam off Yankees closer Mariano Rivera.
The Twins trailed 3-1 heading into the eighth. But Denard Span hit a single to shallow left, Joe Mauer walked, Michael Cuddyer singled, Jim Thome walked with the bases loaded, and then Kubel cleared ’em. The Twinkies are now 6-29 in the Bronx under manager Ron Gardenhire’s leadership. More importantly, they’re 23-14 and own a 1.5-game lead over the Tigers in the AL Central.
Kubel, 27, hasn’t had the best start this year. He’s currently hitting just .225 with a 661 OPS and two home runs in 98 at-bats. Perhaps the exciting four-run shot will get his juices flowing.
Update (9:38 PM ET): The Tigers will receive minor leaguers Wilkel Hernandez and Troy Montgomery from the Angels, Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press reports.
Hernandez, 18, was signed by the Angels as an international free agent out of Venezuela in July 2015. This past year, in rookie ball, Hernandez posted a 2.64 ERA with a 44/22 K/BB ratio in 44 1/3 innings. MLB Pipeline rated him the Angels’ 24th-best prospect.
Montgomery, 23, was selected by the Angels in the eighth round of the 2016 draft. Between Single-A Burlington, High-A Inland Empire, and Double-A Mobile, Montgomery batted an aggregate .271/.358/.413 with eight home runs, 38 RBI, 62 runs scored, and 15 stolen bases in 434 plate appearances. MLB Pipeline rated him as the Angels’ 20th-best prospect.
Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Angels will acquire second baseman Ian Kinsler from the Tigers. It is not known yet what the Tigers will receive in return. Kinsler had to waive his no-trade clause in order for the deal to happen.
Kinsler, 35, hit .236/.313/.412 with 22 home runs, 52 RBI, 90 runs scored, and 14 stolen bases in 613 plate appearances for the Tigers this past season. He’s in the final year of his contract and will earn $10 million for the 2018 season.
The Angels were certainly looking to upgrade at second base and did so with Kinsler. They were also reportedly interested in Cesar Hernandez of the Phillies.