The Colorado Rockies, scuffling for much of the season and currently in fourth place in the NL West (33-30) are getting a nice boost for Tuesday’s series opener against the Minnesota Twins as shortstop Troy Tulowitzki is expected to return to the lineup.
Tulowitzki, one of the Rockies more consistent bats this season (.307/.373/.489) missed the last two days with a groin strain, but tells Troy Renck of the Denver Post that “it feels good,” and he expects to play Tuesday.
Tulo’s return, in addition to the improved hitting of late from Todd Helton and Ryan Spilborghs, gives the Rockies, as Renck writes, “their most powerful lineup to date.”
Many folks had the Rockies winning the NL West this season, but they have largely disappointed so far. Are they beginning to turn the corner?
“I hope,” Tulowitzki said. “You just never know.”
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Jon Morosi reports that the Blue Jays and starter Marco Estrada are nearing an agreement on a contract extension. The deal is expected to be for one guaranteed year, Morosi adds.
Estrada, 34, was set to become a free agent after the season. He earned $26 million on a two-year contract signed with the Jays in November 2015. While the right-hander has a subpar 4.84 ERA on the season, he has a solid 170/67 K/BB ratio in 176 2/3 innings and has looked much better since the end of July. Between July 31 and his most recent start on Saturday, Estrada owns a 3.75 ERA.
J.A. Happ is the only other starter technically under contract with the Jays next season. Marcus Stroman will be eligible for his second year of arbitration and the Jays will certainly agree to give him a raise on his $3.4 million salary for the 2017 season. The Jays will likely be active this offseason in adding rotation help and they’re starting early by locking up Estrada.
Red Sox center fielder Jackie Bradley, Jr. robbed Orioles first baseman Chris Davis of his 25th home run on Tuesday evening, leaping at the fence in center field to make the catch and keep the game scoreless in the bottom of the fifth inning.
Davis swung at the first pitch he saw from Drew Pomeranz, a slider that crossed the middle of the plate.
This game has potential playoff implications, as the first-place Red Sox hold a three-game lead over the Yankees in the NL East. Meanwhile, the Orioles are still in the AL Wild Card race, trailing the Twins by 5.5 games for the second Wild Card slot.