Last week it seemed like the Mets were about to do something wise and send Jennry Mejia down to the minors in order to allow him to revert back into a starting pitcher, thereby providing the promise of greater value to the organization one day. Then they backed up a little and said, no, we may just turn him into a starter at the major league level. Not as wise, but in the grand scheme of things I suppose that’s better than keeping him in the pen.
Forget any wisdom now, however, because they’re just gonna keep him in the pen after all:
“We’ve discussed him at length many times, as far as what’s right
for him, what’s right for the team . . . basically, [keeping him in the pen] was the plan all along. We felt that
Igarashi can handle the eighth, and we need someone to handle the
seventh and I wanted to see Mejia pitch in this environment.”
Says the New York Post: “The deciding factor, according to Manuel, was that Mejia has been much
more effective in short outings than long ones.” Which is true for just about every pitcher. Bullpens are full of guys who couldn’t cut it was starters for exactly this reason, so I’m not sure why it weighs so heavily in Mejia’s case.
This is shortsighted decision by a guy who to whom short term success is more important than the long term health of the organization. And that applies whether it was Omar Minaya or Jerry Manuel’s decision.
Dodgers second baseman Charlie Culberson delivered a walk-off solo home run in the bottom of the 10th inning, clinching the NL West for the Dodgers on Sunday afternoon. What a way to celebrate Vin Scully’s final home game behind the microphone.
The Dodgers were trailing 2-1 in the seventh inning, but shortstop Corey Seager tripled in a run to tie the game. Rockies outfielder David Dahl untied the game in the top of the ninth with a two-out solo home run off of Kenley Jansen. But Seager once again rose to the occasion, blasting a game-tying solo shot in the bottom half of the ninth against Adam Ottavino. That would set the stage for Culberson in the next frame.
Culberson, a former Rockie, came into the afternoon with a .591 OPS and zero home runs in 53 plate appearances. He finished the afternoon 3-for-5 with the homer.
It’s the fourth consecutive season in which the Dodgers have won the NL West. The Cubs have clinched the best record, which means they’ll play the winner of the Wild Card game. The Dodgers will play the Nationals in the NLDS. The Nationals have a 1.5-game lead over the Dodgers for home-field advantage, so both teams are still playing for something of importance in the regular season’s final week.
The Red Sox defeated the Rays 3-2 on Sunday afternoon thanks to some nifty base running by second baseman Dustin Pedroia. The win marks their 11th in a row, inching them closer to a division title.
With the game tied 2-2 in the top of the tenth, Pedroia led off with a single off of reliever Eddie Gamboa. After Xander Bogaerts lined out, David Ortiz ripped a double into the right-center field gap. Pedroia, running hard the whole way, rounded third and motored towards home plate, but the relay throw home — from center fielder Jaff Decker to second baseman Logan Forsythe to catcher Luke Maile — beat Pedroia by a good 10 feet. He was a dead duck.
Pedroia danced around Maile’s glove, avoiding the tag. Maile, on his side, continued to attempt to apply the tag on Pedroia. When he finally did, the ball was knocked loose and Pedroia scored the go-ahead run. The play was reviewed but the call was upheld.
Joe Kelly kept the Rays off the board in the bottom of the 10th, securing the 3-2 victory for the Red Sox.
The Blue Jays also won on Sunday, meaning the Red Sox still have a 5.5-game lead in the AL East. Any combination of two Red Sox wins and Blue Jays losses will seal up the division for the Red Sox. The two clubs round out the regular season with a three-game set against each other in Boston.