When the Dodgers placed Jonathan Broxton on the disabled list Friday the initial word was that he’d be shut down for a couple weeks, but the latest from manager Don Mattingly is that he could miss six weeks.
Beyond that, Mattingly told Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times that Vicente Padilla may keep the closer job even after Broxton returns, assuming he does well in the meantime:
We’ll see how it goes. Obviously, if Vicente comes in and is pitching well out of there, it’s hard to just hand something over to somebody else. We’ll cross that bridge when we get there.
Broxton has struggled for so long now and will apparently miss more than a month with the bone spur in his elbow that it wouldn’t make sense for the Dodgers to simply hand him ninth-inning duties immediately. He hasn’t been effective since the middle of last season.
For a few days, it looked like Aaron Judge was finally hitting his stride in the postseason. He was still striking out at a regular clip, piling more and more strikeouts atop the 16 he racked up in the Division Series, but he was mashing, too. He engineered a three-run homer during Game 3 of the Championship Series, followed by another blast and game-tying double in Game 4. His one-out double helped pad a five-run lead in Game 5, while his 425-footer off of Brad Peacock barely made a dent during a 7-1 loss in Game 6. And then Lance McCullers‘ curveball found and fooled him, as it did five of the 14 batters it met in Game 7:
The strikeout was Judge’s first of the evening and 27th since the start of the playoffs. No other major league batter has racked up that many strikeouts in a single postseason, though Alfonso Soriano’s 26-strikeout record in 2003 comes the closest. Within that record, Judge also collected three golden sombreros (four strikeouts in a single game), narrowly avoiding the dreaded platinum sombrero (five strikeouts in a single game).
It’s an unfortunate footnote to a spectacular year for the rookie outfielder, who decimated the competition with 52 home runs and 8.2 fWAR during the regular season and was a pivotal part of the Yankees’ playoff run. Thankfully, the image of McCullers’ curveball darting just under Judge’s bat won’t be the image that sticks with us for years to come. Instead, it’ll look something like this: