UPDATE: So much for that. Sabathia got Ichiro swinging for his 12th strikeout to begin the seventh inning, but then Brendan Ryan flared a single into left field for the first hit of the ballgame.
9:05 PM: After play resumed, Sabathia got Greg Halman to pop out to first base (ending his strikeout streak at seven) and Chone Figgins on a groundout to end the inning. He’s now perfect through six. It’s beginning to rain again at Yankee Stadium, though.
9:00 PM: Bryan Hoch of MLB.com reports that play will resume around 9 p.m. ET. That’s just about…now. Sabathia will continue.
8:54 PM: CC Sabathia hasn’t allowed a baserunner over his first 5 1/3 innings this evening against the weak-hitting Mariners, but a rain delay has interrupted his chance at history.
Sabathia has already notched 11 strikeouts, just two short of his career-high. Incredibly, he has fanned the last seven batters he has faced.
The big left-hander has only thrown 59 pitches so far, so he should have plenty left in the tank if play resumes quickly. Bryan Hoch of MLB.com reports that the tarp is being dumped out in left field, even though it is still drizzling a bit at Yankee Stadium, so it sounds like he’ll get a chance to finish what he has started.
Blue Jays’ outfielder Anthony Alford will miss at least 4-6 weeks after undergoing surgery on his left wrist, the team announced on Saturday. Alford was placed on the 10-day disabled list earlier in the week after sustaining a left hamate fracture on a foul pitch, and could miss significant time in what looks to be a lengthy rehab process. MLB.com’s Gregor Chisholm reports that the procedure has been scheduled for next week and will be performed by Dr. Donald Sheridan in Arizona.
Alford, 22, was called up to the majors from Double-A New Hampshire last Friday. He went hitless in his first three outings, finally catching a break against the Brewers on Tuesday when he pinch-hit a leadoff double in the seventh. The injury occurred two innings later when Alford fouled off a pitch in the ninth inning, fracturing his wrist in the process.
Alford will join eight other players on the Blue Jays’ disabled list, including outfielders Steve Pearce (calf strain), Dalton Pompey (concussion) and Darrell Cecillani (partial shoulder dislocation). He’s expected to be replaced by 24-year-old outfield prospect Dwight Smith Jr.
Good luck getting a hit against the Nationals this weekend. Stephen Strasburg followed Max Scherzer‘s 13-strikeout performance on Friday with a dazzling outing of his own on Saturday afternoon. The right-hander whiffed a career-best 15 batters in seven innings, allowing just three hits and a walk in the Nats’ 3-0 win.
It took Strasburg several innings to get into a groove after pitching into (and out of) a jam in the first inning. The Padres loaded the bases with Allen Cordoba‘s leadoff single, a throwing error by Ryan Zimmerman and a four-pitch walk to Cory Spangenberg. By the third, Strasburg was cruising, striking out the side on 18 pitches and keeping the Padres off the basepaths until the sixth. He recorded his 15th and final strikeout in the seventh inning, catching Padres’ prospect Franchy Cordero swinging on a 1-2 pitch to effectively end his outing.
While 15 strikeouts set a new career record for the Nationals’ ace, he came close to reaching the mark twice before. The first time, he struck out 14 of 24 batters during his major league debut against the 2010 Pirates, though the 5-2 win did little more than keep the Nationals neck-and-neck with the Marlins at the bottom of the NL East. Five years later, he tied his 14-strikeout record against the 2015 Phillies, tossing a one-hitter in eight innings to cement his ninth victory of the season.
The only one who doesn’t seem overly enthused by the new record? Strasburg himself, who told MLB.com’s Jamal Collier and AJ Cassavell: “It’s pretty cool, but there’s another game five, six days from now. I’ll enjoy it tonight, but back to work tomorrow.”