T.J. Simers of the Los Angeles Times can be a great read. Sometimes I think he stacks the deck a bit with his presentation (query: did he really ask the question that way, or is he making himself look macho in the writeup?), but oftentimes his approach manages to pull out the larger truths of a situation, even if I wouldn’t make him my go-to guy for the details of said situation.
Case in point is today’s piece on Ned Colletti’s Monday press conference. I’m guessing that the order and/or nature of the questions asked Colletti weren’t quite as, oh, I dunno, snappy as Simers presents them. But I also think that Simers’ portrayal of Colletti and Don Mattingly basically being at a loss as to what the future holds for the Dodgers is pretty accurate.
After a year of being told that the divorce had no bearing on the Dodgers’ baseball operations — and by being told specifically by Dodgers media people that even typing such a thing was misleading — we’re about to embark on a winter in which the Dodgers can no longer use “hey, we’re the NL West champs; there’s not need for big fixes” as an excuse for not spending money to improve the team.
Angels DH Albert Pujols passed Mark McGwire for sole possession of 10th place on baseball’s all-time home run leaderboard, slugging his 584th career home run in the first inning of Wednesday night’s game against the Blue Jays.
Mike Trout had already slugged a solo home run off of Jays starter Marco Estrada to bring Pujols to the dish. Pujols jumped on an 0-1 cut fastball, sending it out to left-center field, clearing the fence by a few feet.
Pujols, who finished 4-for-4 with the homer and an RBI double, is batting .257/.321/.441 with 24 home runs and 99 RBI on the year. His next target on the home run leaderboard is Frank Robinson at 586.
Orioles closer Zach Britton had appeared in a major league record 43 consecutive games without allowing an earned run, spanning May 5 to August 22. That streak came to an end on Wednesday evening against the Nationals.
The Orioles entered the bottom of the ninth inning holding a 10-3 lead, but reliever Parker Bridwell immediately found himself in hot water. He yielded back-to-back singles to Danny Espinosa and Clint Robinson. He was able to strike out Trea Turner, but walked Jayson Werth to load the bases. Daniel Murphy then crushed his first career grand slam to make it a 10-7 game. That prompted manager Buck Showalter to bring in Britton.
Britton, too, was knocked around. He served up a single to Bryce Harper, followed by a double to Anthony Rendon that scored Harper, pushing the score to 10-8 and ending Britton’s streak. Wilson Ramos reached on a fielder’s choice back to Britton, but the lefty finally finished the game by getting Ryan Zimmerman to ground into a game-ending 4-6-3 double play.
Britton now holds a nice 0.69 ERA with 38 saves and a 61/16 K/BB ratio in 52 innings of work this season.