You wouldn’t know it based on his homering four times in six games against the Yankees, but Josh Hamilton played the ALCS while still somewhat limited by the fractured ribs that caused him to miss nearly all of September.
Unfortunately for the Giants, the MVP candidate said yesterday that he’s now close to 100 percent healthy six weeks after suffering the injury while crashing into the outfield wall in Minnesota.
Here’s what Hamilton told T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com:
I’m pretty sure the breaks have healed up. The muscle is there at times, but it’s not affecting anything on the field. Every once in a while I feel the muscle, but I just keep it loose and massaged good and it’s fine. You do all that preparation as a precautionary thing so you don’t get hurt and you can play 162 games. I think I’ve really come up with a plan that works, minus hitting any walls.
Hamilton was just 2-for-18 (.111) with six strikeouts in the ALDS win over the Rays, but went 7-for-20 (.350) with four homers, three steals, seven RBIs, and five intentional walks in the ALCS thrashing of the Yankees.
Mets starter Jon Niese left his start Tuesday night against the Cardinals due to left knee pain.
Niese walked two and gave up an RBI single before leaving with a trainer with one out in the bottom of the first inning. He was eventually charged with three earned runs. Robert Gsellman, just up from Las Vegas, took over, making his major league debut under unexpected circumstances.
Niese, who has not pitched well at all since coming over in a trade with the Pirates, is likely to be placed on the disabled list after the game or before tomorrow’s game.
Mark Trumbo still has many chances to hit a home run tonight — it’s only been an inning or so in the Nats-Orioles game — but his weird home run streak is over.
Coming into tonight’s game, Trumbo’s last seven hits had been homers. The all-time record had been 11, set by Mark McGwire back in 2001. The last time Trumbo got a hit that wasn’t a dong was back on August 11. Later in that game, however, he hit a grand slam. After that he went 6 for his next 34, with all those safeties dingers.
But that’s over now. In the first inning tonight he drove in a run with a two-out single. Then he was thrown out trying to stretch it to two. Good job on the RBIs, Mark. Bad job on the base running. Judgment withheld on the homer streak because, really, that’s just kind of weird and cool.