Shannon Drayer points out on Twitter that Paul Konerko made it nine in a row tonight. He’s taken Mariners pitching deep that last nine times he’s faced the team in home games at U.S. Cellular.
The streak dates back to April of last year. The Mariners and White Sox played seven times in Chicago last year and Konerko homered in all seven games. Now he’s started this year 2-for-2 with homers the last two days.
Of course, it’s a pretty exclusive set of conditions, but it’s still a very notable streak, especially considering that no major leaguer has ever homered in more than eight games in a row. Only Dale Long (PIT, 1956), Don Mattingly (NYY, 1987) and Ken Griffey Jr. (SEA, 1993) have ever made it that far.
Also interesting is that Konerko has done nothing else at all during the streak. Tonight’s game is just in the third inning as of this writing, so we’ll ignore it for now. But in the first eight games, he had a total of 10 hits and nine RBI. Tonight’s homer, just like all of the others, was a solo shot.
Red Sox starter Drew Pomeranz hasn’t pitched in a week due to soreness in his left forearm. He threw a bullpen on Thursday afternoon and said, “I definitely feel like I can maybe help (as a reliever in the playoffs,” as ESPN’s Scott Lauber reports.
The Red Sox clinched the AL East on Wednesday, so they don’t need to rush Pomeranz along. And using him out of the bullpen might ultimately be best as he regressed quite a bit after coming to Boston from San Diego in July. In 13 starts with the Red Sox, Pomeranz has a 4.68 ERA with a 69/24 K/BB ratio in 67 1/3 innings.
Eduardo Rodriguez and Clay Buchholz have been throwing the ball quite well as of late. Paired with Rick Porcello and David Price, the Red Sox still have the depth to be menacing in the postseason.
Remember Jesus Montero? The former Yankees and Mariners prospect? Well, he was picked up by the Blue Jays back in March after the Mariners waived him and played 126 games for Triple-A Buffalo this year. That went alright, I suppose, with Montero hitting .317/.349/.438 with 11 homers. He played a bit of first base too, trying to break the mold he’s been stuck in as a 26-year-old DH.
If this season was a platform for him to make one last push to the bigs, the platform was just pulled out from under him: he has been suspended for 50 games after testing positive for dimethylbutylamine (DMBA), a stimulant in violation of the Minor League Drug Prevention and Treatment Program.
The minor league season is over, of course, so he’ll serve that suspension next season. Assuming the Jays keep him in the fold.