After giving up 11 runs last night, Ryan Rowland-Smith placed on DL rather than waiver wire

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Last night Ryan Rowland-Smith became the eighth pitcher to allow double-digit earned runs in a game this season, coughing up 11 runs in a blowout loss to the White Sox.
Rowland-Smith was down 4-0 after one inning, 7-0 after two innings, and 8-0 after three innings, yet the Mariners left him out there to complete five frames in an effort to save the bullpen. And now Rowland-Smith has been placed on the disabled list with a “lower back strain.”
After the ugly outing manager Don Wakamatsu said he’d have to talk to general manager Jack Zduriencik to “make a decision” regarding Rowland-Smith’s future, because at 1-10 with a 6.96 ERA he certainly didn’t deserve to remain in the Mariners’ rotation and the 27-year-old left-hander is out of minor-league options.
Sending him to the DL is a way to avoid potentially losing him on waivers, at least temporarily, and even with his horrendous work this season Rowland-Smith still has a 4.56 ERA in 352 career innings. Like me, Rob Neyer of ESPN.com wonders about the validity of the injury given the timing of the whole thing.

Video: Albert Almora, Jr. saved by the ivy

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The ALCS had a weird play in Game 4 on Tuesday night, but Game 4 of the NLCS did as well. This one involved Cubs outfielder Albert Almora, Jr. and his attempt to spark a rally in the bottom of the ninth inning against Dodgers reliever Ross Stripling.

After Alex Avila singled, Almora ripped a double to left field, past a diving Enrique Hernandez. The ball rolled to the ivy in front of the wall. Most outfielders there would’ve put their hands up, which would have alerted the umpires to call an immediate ground-rule double. Hernandez didn’t, instead fishing the ball out and firing it back into the infield. Avila had stopped at third base, but Almora kept running. Much to his surprise, he pulled up into third base to see his teammate standing there, resigned to his fate as a dead duck. Third baseman Justin Turner applied the tag on Almora for what he thought was the first out of the inning.

Almora, however, was then sent back to second base after the umpires correctly called a ground-rule double.

Unfortunately for the Cubs, the lucky break didn’t help as closer Kenley Jansen came in and took care of business, retiring all three batters he faced without letting an inherited runner score. The Dodgers won 6-1 and now lead the NLCS three games to none. They’ll try to punch their ticket to the World Series on Wednesday.