Tim Lincecum is ducking the Phillies. Or Vance Worley, anyway.
The Giants scratched their ace, who looked just fine at the White House yesterday, with a case of “the flu” Tuesday and moved up Barry Zito in the rotation to replace him in tonight’s showdown.
I think Lincecum just wanted to take his chances with Cole Hamels instead of the red-hot Worley. Worley has allowed one run or fewer in six straight starts, the longest such streak in the NL this season. If he can do it again tonight, he’ll match Justin Verlander for the majors’ longest streak this season.
Lincecum, on the other hand, has allowed one run or fewer in a mere five of his last six starts. He’s 8-8 with a 2.90 ERA, while Worley is 6-1 with a 2.02 ERA.
Jared Diamond of The Wall Street Journal reports that Mets second baseman Neil Walker is expected to undergo season-ending surgery to fix a herniated disk in his lower back. Walker has avoided the disabled list but hasn’t played since last Saturday and has only two starts since August 22.
If Walker does indeed go under the knife, he’ll end his first season with the Mets with a terrific .282/.347/.476 triple-slash line with 23 home runs and 55 RBI in 458 plate appearances. While the Mets couldn’t have foreseen Daniel Murphy having such a terrific season, Walker was more than adequate in Murphy’s shoes at second base.
Kelly Johnson and Wilmer Flores have handled second base in Walker’s absence and will continue to do so through the remainder of the season.
Rockies 1B/OF Stephen Cardullo celebrated his 29th birthday on Wednesday, so the rookie decided to celebrate by homering in both games of his team’s doubleheader at home against the Dodgers.
In the first game, Cardullo pinch-hit for Chris Rusin in the seventh inning and drilled a solo home run off of Casey Fien. In the second game, Cardullo smacked a grand slam to left-center field off of Bud Norris in the first inning.
Cardullo made his major league debut this past Friday. He was hitless in his first five at-bats before singling as a pinch-hitter on Monday.