More shoulder problems send Travis Hafner to disabled list

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Travis Hafner has missed the past five games with shoulder soreness and the Indians placed him on the disabled list this afternoon. Hafner has a long history of shoulder problems, so while his latest malady is being called merely “soreness” for now it wouldn’t be surprising if it proved to be more serious.
While nowhere near his MVP-caliber production from 2005/2006 he’s posted an OPS around .800 both this year and last year, but it looks like Hafner will end up playing fewer than 100 games for the third straight season.
He’s still owed $13 million in each of the next two seasons with a $13 million option or $2.75 million buyout for 2013, so the Indians will try to squeeze whatever value they can out of one of the most regrettable signings in team history.
Shelley Duncan and Jordan Brown figure to see action at designated hitter for however long Hafner is out.

Rich Hill has a perfect game through seven innings

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Dodgers starter Rich Hill is facing off against the Pirates in Pittsburgh tonight. And he’s not having any trouble with them: he’s absolutely perfect though seven innings. He’s needed 73 pitches to get that far, so if he can keep the perfection up he certainly has enough in the tank to finish it.

Thing is: he may not even get the win. That’s because Pirates starter Trevor Williams has blanked the Dodgers through eight, scattering seven hits and four walks yet, somehow, not allowing a run to score.

The Pirates are coming to bat in the bottom of the eighth. We’ll keep you posted.

Zach Britton’s consecutive saves streak has ended at 60

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On September 20, 2015, Zach Britton blew a save against the Rays. Little did he know that he wouldn’t blow another save until August 23, 2017, converting 60 consecutive save opportunities.

Britton took the mound with a 7-5 lead in the top of the ninth inning of Wednesday afternoon’s game against the Athletics. He yielded a single to Jed Lowrie, a double to Boog Powell, an RBI single to Marcus Semien, and a sacrifice fly to Matt Joyce to allow the A’s to close the two-run deficit. In the next at-bat, he uncorked a wild pitch and then walked Khris Davis before being removed from the game. Miguel Castro relieved Britton, but walked Ryon Healy on four pitches to load the bases. Castro wriggled out of the jam by getting Matt Olson to pop up and striking out Matt Chapman, stranding two of Britton’s runners.

Britton entered Wednesday’s action 11-for-11 in save chances on the season with a 2.88 ERA and a 19/12 K/BB ratio in 25 innings. He missed two months earlier this season with a strained left forearm.