Multiple sources are saying that the Dodgers are taking a hard look at infielder Juan Uribe.
I like Uribe and I like that the Dodgers would look at trying to take away a key part of the Giants’ 2010 success. Some nice in-your-face value to it, ya know?
At the same time, I think Uribe may be the overpay of the offseason. He’s got pop, yes, and after having watched him in the playoffs I’m higher on his defense than I had been previously. But he still has some suspect on-base abilities, posting a .300+ OBP twice in the past five years. Yes, it was the last two, so maybe he figured something out, but he’s still pretty below average in that department.
I’d take a chance on him if I were the Dodgers. He’s certainly an upgrade over Ryan Theriot at second and could easily replace Rafael Furcal or Casey Blake if one gets injured or next year when both are presumably gone. But in a thin market for infielders, he’s probably going to get paid more than he’s worth. As long as the Dodgers realize that and don’t expect him to be an elite hitter, great. If they think they’re going to get everything they pay for, however, they may be a bit disappointed.
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 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.