Nationals right-hander Chien-Ming Wang is inching closer and closer to returning to the major leagues.
According to MLB.com’s Bill Ladson, Wang will be promoted to Triple-A Syracuse early next week and will make his fifth minor league rehab start Tuesday night against the Mets’ Triple-A affiliate.
Wang has surrendered just 13 hits and two earned runs in 18 minor league rehab innings thus far, striking out eight batters and issuing only two walks. If the progress continues, he could join the Nationals’ starting rotation by the end of this month.
Wang, a 31-year-old native of Taiwan, hasn’t appeared in a major league game since 2009, when he posted a 9.64 ERA in 42 innings with the Yankees. He won 38 games and maintained a 3.67 ERA from 2006-2007.
The Yankees fell behind early to the Orioles on Sunday afternoon, a day after dropping both ends of Saturday’s doubleheader. Their game, as did every other game on Sunday with the exception of the Braves-Cardinals doubleheader, started at 3:05 or 3:10 EDT, a change Major League Baseball recently made to create fairness on the final day of the season.
Girardi is not a fan. Per the Associated Press:
It was cloudy at Camden Yards at 3:05 p.m., but late-afternoon games often make it difficult for batters to see pitches.
Girardi said, “Here’s the thing that bothers me: If it’s a sunny day you’re playing in shadows.”
He added, “If it’s the most important game of the year to get in, I don’t think that’s right.”
Understanding the idea is for every team to play at the same time, Girardi said, “Then play all night games.”
One wonders if MLB had scheduled Sunday’s slate of games for the night, if Girardi would have instead complained about batters losing fly balls in the stadium lights. Furthermore, both teams have to play in the same conditions.
Marlins outfielder Ichiro Suzuki was given an opportunity to play a new position in Sunday’s series finale against the Phillies. After the Phillies rallied to take a 6-2 lead in the seventh, the Marlins let Suzuki take the hill in the eighth. And, in news that surprises no one, he was impressive.
Though Suzuki gave up a run on two hits, he flashed a fastball that hit the mid-80’s and a breaking ball with some bite.
Suzuki, who turns 42 years old later this month, is 65 hits of 3,000 in his major league career. The Marlins are interested in bringing him back in 2016.