UPDATE: While Dylan Hernandez reports the Angels are in it, Tim Brown of Yahoo! Sports disagrees, saying they are not the third “mystery team.” I just don’t see this one happening, anyway. Makes for exciting trade deadline fodder, but I think he’s more of an August possibility.
12:38 PM: Mystery team identified? Maybe. A source tells Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times that the Angels are also in the mix for Manny Ramirez.
12:25 PM: According to Tim Brown of Yahoo! Sports, three teams have
called the Dodgers about Ramirez: the White Sox, the Rays and a
“mystery team.” Woo-hoo. Here’s our first mystery team of the afternoon!
The Dodgers aren’t shopping Ramirez, according to Brown, but they are taking phone calls. Ramirez is reportedly open to a possible trade.
12:20 PM: This might not be over. Calling it a “halfcourt shot,” a source tells Ken Rosenthal that the Ken Williams and the White Sox intend to make one more run at Manny before today’s deadline.
11:45 AM: Ken Rosenthal says the White Sox wanted the Dodgers to pay all but $1 million of the approximately $6.7 million left on Ramirez’s contract with no player in return. Pretty easy to see why that didn’t happen.
11:26 AM: Sources tell Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com that the White Sox asked the Dodgers about the availability of Manny Ramirez, however they were rejected.
“Not happening,” said a source with knowledge of the discussions.
Just yesterday, Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times wrote that White Sox GM Ken Williams “had something big cooking” and even speculated about Manny during a radio appearance, so it appears he wasn’t far off.
Ramirez is currently on the disabled list for the second time due to a calf injury and the third time overall this season. According to Rosenthal and Morosi, the 38-year-old outfielder could be a trade candidate in August.
The Dodgers are NL West champions for the fifth time in a row. They clinched with a 4-2 win over the Giants on Friday night, taking their first and only lead on a mammoth record-breaking home run from Cody Bellinger in the third inning.
Rich Hill turned in another quality start, going six innings with five hits, a run and nine strikeouts to keep the Giants at bay. He tacked on an RBI hit of his own, too, lashing a double to left field for his first extra-base hit since 2007.
The Giants, meanwhile, deployed Jeff Samardzija and his 4.42 ERA for 4 1/3 innings. Samardzija was on the hook for the Dodgers’ four-run spread in the third and took his 15th loss of the season. Pablo Sandoval came through with a solo home run in the ninth, but the rest of San Francisco’s offense wasn’t so lucky against Kenley Jansen, who struck out the side to clinch the game — and the division.
After Friday’s showstopper, the Dodgers are just two wins away from their first 100-win season since 1974. If they win the remaining eight games of the season, they’ll beat out the 1953 Brooklyn Dodgers for the most wins in franchise history.
Cody Bellinger helped the Dodgers to their first lead on Friday night, going deep for his 39th home run of the season and setting a new National League rookie home run record in the process. With two on and two out in the third inning, the Dodgers’ slugger launched a 2-1 pitch from the Giants’ Jeff Samardzija, skimming the right field fence to give the team a three-run cushion:
The three-run bomb was Bellinger’s sixth of the season. In what is undoubtedly a Rookie of the Year award-worthy campaign, he’s logged 21 solo shots, 11 two-run blasts and a single grand slam. His historic home run topped former NL rookie leaders Frank Robinson and Wally Berger, at 38 homers apiece.
The Dodgers need to stay on top of the Giants to clinch the NL West or, barring that, have the Marlins pull off a win over the Diamondbacks. They currently lead the Giants 4-1 in the bottom of the fifth inning. The Marlins, meanwhile, are staying just ahead of the D-backs with a 9-7 lead in the top of the sixth.