Rangers land Marlins' Jorge Cantu for two right-handers

1 Comment

Adding the right-handed bat they’ve wanted since the winter, the Rangers have acquired Jorge Cantu from the Marlins for right-handers Evan Reed and Omar Poveda.
After a fast start, Cantu had fallen all of the way to .259/.308/.408 for the Marlins. He had driven in 54 runs, but 23 of those came way back in April. By month, he had posted OPSs of 920, 701, 680 and 536. He also doesn’t exactly fit the bill as a lefty masher. In his career, he has a 790 OPS versus southpaws, as opposed to a 765 OPS against righties. He was at 720 against left-handers this year.
It makes one wonder if the Rangers wouldn’t have been better off with Mike Lowell instead.
Fortunately, they didn’t give up a whole lot in return. Reed is a 24-year-old reliever in Double-A. He had a 1.62 ERA for Frisco, but he doesn’t project as more than a sixth- and seventh-inning guy.
Poveda, 22, underwent Tommy John surgery back in February and won’t return until next year. His stock had fallen long before the procedure, and while there’s hope that the surgery will restore his lost promise, he’s just a lottery ticket right now.
There’s the chance Cantu could find his stroke for the Rangers and overtake Chris Davis as the regular first baseman, but there were better options available if Texas wanted someone to start over Davis. As is, he’ll mostly play versus lefties for now.

Mike Moustakas sets Royals single-season record with 37th home run

Ezra Shaw/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas belted his 37th home run on Wednesday evening, setting a new club record for homers in a single season. Moustakas had been tied with Steve Balboni, who hit 36 home runs in 1985.

The home run came on a 2-0, 82 MPH slider from Blue Jays reliever Carlos Ramirez, boosting the Royals’ lead to 13-0 in the top of the sixth inning.

Moustakas, 29, entered the night batting .271/.313/.523 with 82 RBI and 71 runs scored in 560 plate appearances.

Chris Sale records his 300th strikeout this season

Adam Glanzman/Getty Images
5 Comments

Red Sox starter Chris Sale recorded his 300th strikeout of the 2017 season on Wednesday night against the Orioles. The momentous occasion occurred with two outs in the eighth inning. Facing Ryan Flaherty, Sale threw a slider that caught the strike zone low and inside for called strike three.

Sale and Clayton Kershaw (2015) are the only pitchers to strikeout 300-plus batters in a season in the last 15 years. Curt Schilling and Randy Johnson accomplished the feat in 2002, and Johnson also did it in 2001 and 2000. Pedro Martinez had been the only other Red Sox pitcher to have a 300-strikeout season.

Through eight scoreless innings, Sale limited the Orioles to four hits with no walks and 13 strikeouts. The Red Sox offense gave him plenty of run support. Mookie Betts and Devin Marrero each hit two-run home runs in the fourth. Hanley Ramirez added a two-run double in the sixth and Dustin Pedroia hit a two-run double of his own in the eighth to make it 8-0.