Yesterday the Marlins and the Reds played a double header in order to get out ahead of Hurricane Irene’s impact. As of a few minutes ago we have our first official rejiggering of the schedule for this weekend: the Phillies have moved Sunday’s game to Saturday, making it part of a day-night doubleheader with the Marlins.
Of course, there’s a decent chance that rain will already be falling on Philly by Saturday, but I suppose that the Phils are counting on the combined awesomeness of Cliff Lee and Roy Halladay to keep the atmospheric forces at bay.
There are many other series that are bound to be impacted by Irene, including the Yankees-Orioles in Baltimore, Braves-Mets in New York and the Athletics-Red Sox in Boston. No word on those, but there’s a non-trivial chance that we’ll have as many as 19 games on Saturday as a result. And if some of those get rained out the last few weeks of the season are likely to be a scheduling nightmare.
In the HBT video today I cursed James Bond for screwing up Martinis. I doubly curse him now for vanquishing villains who had perfectly good weather control systems at their disposal. Sure, they’re mostly used for evil, but I bet we could have persuaded them to have this storm pushed off the east coast in the name of baseball, right?
Thursday is September 1, which means rosters expand. As a result, the Nationals plan to promote pitcher Mat Latos to the major league roster, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. Latos had an opt-out clause for Monday, but after discussing the matter with the team, he agreed to stay at Triple-A Syracuse until Thursday.
Latos, 28, put up a 4.62 ERA over 11 starts with the White Sox before being released in mid-June. Nearly two weeks later, he signed a minor league contract with the Nationals.
In the Nationals’ minor league system, Latos has made three starts for the club’s Gulf Coast League team as well as three for Syracuse. In aggregate, the right-hander has yielded six runs (four earned) on 20 hits and 10 walks with 28 strikeouts in 28 innings.
Latos will likely pitch out of a long relief role for the Nationals and can be used as starting rotation insurance as well.
Mark Buehrle hasn’t officially retired, but he hasn’t thrown a pitch in professional baseball since last October. Still, the Blue Jays wouldn’t mind having some insurance, so manager John Gibbons recently texted Buehrle, “You know, rosters expand in September,” Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith reports.
Buehrle’s response? He texted back a picture of a lake. Sounds like he’s not interested in making a return, at least this year.
Last year, at the age of 36, Buehrle went 15-8 with a 3.81 ERA with a 91/33 K/BB ratio in 198 2/3 innings while leading the league with four complete games. He fell 1 1/3 innings shy of a 15th consecutive 200-inning season. There are many worse ways to end a career.