The Jays come in to Philly tonight for a three game set . . . as the home team.
You’ll recall that this little switcheroo is the result of the G-20 summit taking place in Toronto. As a result, the series that was supposed to take place in the Rogers Centre is now in Philly with the Phillies as the “visiting team” and the Jays as the “home team.”
And they’re gonna do what they can to make that fiction a reality. The Phillies will be wearing their road grays and the Jays their home whites. The DH will be used. While there’s some confusion on this point, it seems that the Blue Jays will get the majority of the gate for the series, while the Phillies still retain the concessions.
Only two things are really undercutting the suspension of disbelief as to the location of the series: the facts that (a) the Phillies players get so sleep in their own beds and have breakfast with their families; and (b) there will be 40,000 screaming Phillies fans at the games. But, sure, other than that, root-root-root for the home team . . .
And yes, I realize that the Joe Carter pic is a low blow to Phillies fans. But that was 17 years ago and you guys are getting three gratuitous home games, so I think you deal with it. Jays fans need it.
CC Sabathia‘s contract with the Yankees expires after the 2017 season but the lefty feels that he has enough left in the tank to pitch in 2018 and beyond, Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News reports.
Sabathia said, “I just know myself. I know I feel like it’s not my time yet. Barring any crazy injuries I know I can pitch past next year. I feel like this is just the beginning of what I’m trying to do. I feel like there’s a lot more still to learn and a lot better to get. It’s exciting.”
The 36-year-old lefty currently holds a 4.02 ERA and a 144/63 K/BB ratio in 172 1/3 innings. It’s his best and healthiest season since 2012. He battled a knee injury last season and checked into rehab for alcohol addiction last October. Sabathia said that being treated for his addiction put him “in a good spot.”
Sabathia is owed $25 million through a vesting option for the 2017 season.
The Red Sox can thank the Orioles for not having to fight to clinch the division on Thursday or later. The Orioles came from behind to defeat the Blue Jays 3-2 on Wednesday evening, clinching the AL East for the Red Sox.
A few minutes after that game went final, the Red Sox squandered a 3-0 lead taken in the eighth inning, culminating in a walk-off grand slam by Mark Teixeira in the bottom of the ninth inning. Closer Craig Kimbrel started the ninth, but didn’t have control over any of his pitches. He allowed a leadoff single followed by three consecutive walks to force in a run. Joe Kelly relieved Kimbrel and seemed to be close to wriggling out of the jam, getting Starlin Castro to strike out looking and Didi Gregorius to pop up. But after starting Teixeira with a first-pitch curve ball for a strike, Teixera clobbered a 99 MPH fastball, sending it over the fence in right-center to end the game.
For the Yankees, the come-from-behind victory was crucial as it staved off Wild Card elimination for one more day.
This is the first time the Red Sox have clinched the AL East since 2013, also the last year they won the World Series.