The Giants are crumbling before our eyes.
Already short handed on their bench tonight against the Braves, the Giants were forced to go to their bullpen early after left-hander Jonathan Sanchez was pulled in the bottom of the third inning with a left ankle sprain.
Sanchez suffered the injury while fielding a sacrifice bunt by opposing pitcher Randall Delgado. The southpaw gave up one run on one hit and one walk before being replaced by Guillermo Mota.
Barry Zito just sprained his ankle during a rehab start with Triple-A Fresno over the weekend, so the Giants will have to be creative if the injury to Sanchez requires an extended absence. Dan Runzler was just called up from the minor leagues today and has been used primarily as a starter with Triple-A Fresno this season. The more exciting option would be left-hander Eric Surkamp, who has a 2.03 ERA and 156/40 K/BB ratio over 128 1/3 innings at the Double-A level this season.
The Cubs soundly defeated the Cardinals on Monday night, 10-2, sending their magic number down to one. They will try to clinch the NL Central on Tuesday with another win against the Cardinals. Alternatively, if they lose, they can still clinch if the Brewers also lose on Tuesday.
The Cubs, of course, won the Central last year en route to winning their first World Series since 1908. It wasn’t nearly as easy this year as the club was below .500 entering June and was exactly at .500 entering July. A 16-8 July, 17-12 August, and 15-8 September have helped put the Cubs back in position to return to the postseason.
Not to be forgotten, the Cardinals were eliminated from NL Central contention with Monday’s loss. Now they have their sights set on the second NL Wild Card slot and currently trail the Rockies in that race.
The matchups for Tuesday’s action:
Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union Tribune reports that Padres pitcher Carter Capps will undergo surgery this offseason to address thoracic outlet syndrome, which doctors believe caused the right-hander’s blood clots. The Padres hope to have him ready by spring training next year.
Capps, 27, underwent Tommy John surgery last year and didn’t debut this season until August 7. He made 11 relief appearances, yielding nine runs on 12 hits and two walks with seven strikeouts in 12 1/3 innings. He went back on the DL on September 12 due to the blood clot issue.
The Padres acquired Capps from the Marlins last July in the Andrew Cashner trade which ended up having a lot of moving parts. Capps will enter his third and final year of arbitration eligibility this offseason. It’s quite possible the Padres choose to non-tender him.