Determining the number of major league games which have occurred in history is something of an inexact science. Record keeping was a bit spotty once upon a time. There’s the political question of whether you count the random upstart leagues that merged into or at least greatly influenced the National and then the American Leagues. And of course you have to ask yourself why we don’t count playoff games given that they’re, you know, way more important.
But let’s save all of that and just go with it, shall we? Here’s the press release from MLB:
Major League Baseball will celebrate the 200,000th regular season game in its history during the last weekend of the 2011 regular season, as confirmed by the Elias Sports Bureau, MLB’s official statistician. It is estimated that the milestone game will occur during the full slate of games on Saturday, September 24th. Because of considerations like rainouts and other potential circumstances, the precise game will be identified as the occasion approaches.
“We are proud of this achievement,” said Commissioner Alan H. (Bud) Selig. “And now that we have determined that we will not count any Cleveland Indians games which took place between 1969 and 1994 as ‘Major League’ games, determining our final count was made considerably easier.”
I may have taken that last quote out of context. I accidentally deleted the press release and wrote it from memory.
The story of the Indians postseason cannot be told without talking about injuries to starting pitchers Carlos Carrasco and Danny Salazar. They have forced Terry Francona to lean even harder on his bullpen than he otherwise may have and have cause the Indians to press rookie Ryan Merritt into service.
But Cleveland will be getting at least one of their starters back: Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway that Danny Salazar will be part of the World Series roster.
Salazar has not pitched since early September due to a strained right flexor muscle, but according to Callaway, Salazar is ready to throw 65-70 pitches in a game. That could mean a start, probably in Game 4 after Corey Kluber, Trevor Bauer and Josh Tomlin. Merritt was a possible Game 4 starter, but he could either pair up with Salazar in a tandem start or serve in long relief.
Cubs’ left fielder Kyle Schwarber missed virtually the entire 2016 season due to torn knee ligaments, but he has been working his way back to health more quickly than initially expected. Indeed, he has been playing for the Cubs in the Arizona Fall League, serving as a DH. Many have speculated that the Cubs will activate him for the World Series.
Today, at his World Series media session, Cubs manager Joe Maddon said that reports from Arizona are good on Schwarber and that the he will fly to Cleveland to join the team after tonight’s game in Arizona. Maddon says the team will make a decision on activating him once he arrives. The Cubs have until tomorrow morning to set their World Series roster.
Our guess is that Schwarber will get the call and will serve as the DH for the Cubs in Games 1, 2 and, if necessary, 6 and 7 in Cleveland. If so, a lost season could very quickly turn into a storybook season for the Cubs’ young slugger.