Turducken

HBT Weekend Wrapup

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I love Thanksgiving week. It brings back so many memories. Grandma’s turkey. Weird uncle Pete’s turducken. That time I learned about the Braves signing Andres Galarraga while I was sitting in the Charlotte, North Carolina airport waiting for a connecting flight . . .

  • It strikes me that the Derek Jeter saga is putting lie to that notion that baseball is truly cracking down on teams and agents using the press to negotiate this winter.
  • Jim Leyritz is acquitted of manslaughter charges. No joke here. Just don’t mess up the second chance you’ve been given, Jim.
  • Domonic Brown is learning that just because you’re sent to play winter ball doesn’t mean you actually get to play winter ball.
  • Oliver Perez is stinking up the Mexican League. This is probably a good thing. If he was pitching well down there the Mets would be tempted to start fresh with him next spring to see if he could snag a job. Now it’s way easier to simply release the guy.
  • The Marlins and Nats are both courting Javier Vazquez. It’d be nice if he stayed on the east coast this year, because if he gets to pitch in Citi Field it will allow some Yankees fans additional chances to boo him.
  • The bidding for Cliff Lee is expected to start at $120 million. I got this image of that “Saturday Night Live” sketch from the mid 80s when Christopher Guest was the auctioneer and he threatened to suffocate hamsters and shoot himself if the bidding didn’t go higher. I may be one of six people who remember that sketch.

Short week, kids. You can do this. Just pretend that today is Wednesday.

Red Sox set a new major league record with 11 strikeouts in a row

BALTIMORE, MD - SEPTEMBER 20: Starting pitcher Eduardo Rodriguez #52 of the Boston Red Sox works the first inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on September 20, 2016 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Patrick Smith/Getty Images
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Lost in the nifty base running by Dustin Pedroia that won Sunday’s game against the Rays, the Red Sox set a new major league record by striking out 11 batters in a row, per Peter Abraham of The Boston Globe. Starter Eduardo Rodriguez struck out the final six Rays he faced and reliever Heath Hembree struck out five Rays in a row after that. Tom Seaver had the previous consecutive strikeout streak of 10, set on April 22, 1970 against the Padres.

The Red Sox also set a team record with 23 strikeouts in total: 13 by Rodriguez, five by Hembree, one by Matt Barnes, and four by Joe Kelly. Per Abraham, that’s the most strikeouts in a 10-inning game since at least 1913 and the most in a game of any length since 2004.

For Rodriguez, Sunday marked the first double-digit strikeout game of his career. He has pitched quite well since returning to the rotation at the start of the second half. Over 13 starts, the lefty has a 3.10 ERA with a 70/23 K/BB ratio in 72 2/3 innings.

Dodgers clinch NL West on Charlie Culberson’s walk-off home run

WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 20: Charlie Culberson #6 of the Los Angeles Dodgers runs to first base after hitting a single RBI in the second inning against the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park on July 20, 2016 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Matt Hazlett/Getty Images)
Matt Hazlett/Getty Images
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Dodgers second baseman Charlie Culberson delivered a walk-off solo home run in the bottom of the 10th inning, clinching the NL West for the Dodgers on Sunday afternoon. What a way to celebrate Vin Scully’s final home game behind the microphone.

The Dodgers were trailing 2-1 in the seventh inning, but shortstop Corey Seager tripled in a run to tie the game. Rockies outfielder David Dahl untied the game in the top of the ninth with a two-out solo home run off of Kenley Jansen. But Seager once again rose to the occasion, blasting a game-tying solo shot in the bottom half of the ninth against Adam Ottavino. That would set the stage for Culberson in the next frame.

Culberson, a former Rockie, came into the afternoon with a .591 OPS and zero home runs in 53 plate appearances. He finished the afternoon 3-for-5 with the homer.

It’s the fourth consecutive season in which the Dodgers have won the NL West. The Cubs have clinched the best record, which means they’ll play the winner of the Wild Card game. The Dodgers will play the Nationals in the NLDS. The Nationals have a 1.5-game lead over the Dodgers for home-field advantage, so both teams are still playing for something of importance in the regular season’s final week.