Throwing one terrible inning under odd circumstances Saturday night as Colorado and Cleveland were putting the finishes touches on their blockbuster trade screwed up Ubaldo Jimenez’s usual throwing schedule, so his Indians debut won’t come until Friday against the Rangers.
That means he’ll have one extra day of rest between starts, even though his last “start” consisted of throwing 45 pitches and recording three outs. Jimenez will have 12 days off between his last non-weird Rockies start and his first Indians start.
When pitching on more than five days of rest Jimenez has a 5.24 ERA in 13 career starts and he’ll have a tough first assignment, as the Rangers lead the league in runs scored at home while hitting .294 with a .511 slugging percentage in Texas as a team.
Of course, Jimenez is used to pitching in tough ballparks. He has a 3.67 ERA in 66 starts at Coors Field.
Red Sox catcher Sandy Leon achieved a rare feat during Monday afternoon’s Grapefruit League exhibition against the Orioles: he homered twice in one inning. One of those homers happened to be a grand slam.
Leon led off the top of the fifth inning with a solo home run off of Logan Verrett. Verrett continued to get knocked around, giving up three singles and a walk before being relieved by Brian Moran. Moran gave up a walk to load the bases, then a single to knock in a run and keep the bases loaded. Leon stepped back to the plate and swatted a grand slam to left field, making it an eight-run fifth for the Red Sox. The Sox would tack on one more before the inning was mercifully ended.
How often do players homer twice in one inning during the regular season? Not that often. Since 2010, the feat has been accomplished four times in the American League and twice in the National League. The Orioles’ Mark Trumbo was the only one to do it last year.
As for Leon, he’s on track to open the season as the starting catcher in Boston, Jason Mastrodonato of the Boston Herald reported last week.
The Phillies announced on Monday that the club released veteran catchers Ryan Hanigan and Bryan Holaday. Both were competing for the back-up catcher spot on the team’s 25-man roster. With both out of the picture, that means Andrew Knapp has won that honor.
Knapp, 25, hit a combined .266/.330/.390 with eight home runs and 46 RBI in 443 plate appearances last year at Triple-A Lehigh Valley. He did not have a great spring but has hit well as of late, which likely pushed him ahead of Hanigan and Holaday. Knapp will serve as the understudy to starting catcher Cameron Rupp.