For the first time in over 20 years, a World Series game is going to start before 7pm Eastern time. It will be Game Three which, thanks to the good people at Chevrolet who kicked in some extra advertising scratch, will start at 6:57 p.m.
Game Three is scheduled for October 30th, and that’s a Saturday, so it won’t help you get to bed at a decent hour on a work/school night. It will, however, provide you with a great excuse to not get up from the couch between the end of the afternoon college football games and the World Series. Usually that window is when my wife demands that I do things around the house like, I dunno, acknowledge the existence of the kids. Now I don’t have to.
One more good thing about it: since the NL will be the home team this year, Game Three will be played in an AL park. That means that the possibility of crazy late afternoon shadows in San Francisco — should the Giants make it that far — won’t be a problem. The farthest west the game could possibly be played is Texas, and 5:57 Central time should put it safely past the shadowlands.
One thing to watch, though: the ratings for the first hour. I’m willing to bet that they’re a notch lower than the first hour of the other games this year. Which will just go to show that, though we all moan and complain about wanting playoff games to start earlier, more of us watch them in prime time than we would before prime time.
ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reported on Monday that the Angels have received inquiries from multiple teams concerning starter Hector Santiago. He adds that the club is willing to listen to offers. Jon Morosi of FOX Sports and MLB Network reports that the Marlins are among the teams that have inquired.
Santiago, 28, has pitched to a 4.32 ERA with 96 strikeouts and 47 walks in 110 1/3 innings. Sabermetric statistics such as FIP, xFIP, and SIERA think the lefty has pitched even worse than his ERA indicates however, pitting 2016 as his worst performance to date.
Santiago is earning $5 million this season and will enter his third and final year of arbitration eligibility going into 2017.
We also learned earlier that, in an effort to bolster their starting rotation, the Marlins have also shown interest in Wade Miley of the Mariners and Jeremy Hellickson of the Phillies.
The Rangers placed DH Prince Fielder on the disabled list last week due to more neck discomfort. On Friday, Fielder met with Dr. Drew Dossett, who performed spinal fusion surgery on Fielder in 2014 for a herniated disk in his neck. Dossett has recommended another procedure, so Fielder will undergo season-ending surgery this week, Jeff Wilson of the Fort-Worth Star Telegram reports.
Fielder was having a rough season, batting .212/.292/.334 with eight home runs and 44 RBI in 370 plate appearances. He played in only 42 games in 2014, but returned in 2015 looking more like his old self. Unfortunately, neck and back issues are notoriously difficult to fix. Hopefully, this upcoming procedure does the trick for Fielder.
Fielder is owed $24 million per season through 2020, with the Tigers paying $6 million of it per season.