Howard Johnson - 87 Fleer

Howard Johnson to play with son for indy team

5 Comments points out that the Rockland Boulders of the independent Can-Am League on Tuesday announced the signing of father-and-son pair Howard and Glen Johnson.

The duo will play alongside one another on Sept. 4-5 against the Newark Bears.

“This may be my last go ‘round so it’s a great opportunity to play in a professional game with my son,” said Howard Johnson. “How many fathers can do that?”

The 51-year-old Johnson retired in 1995 after playing 14 seasons in the majors and making two All-Star teams.  A fantasy baseball stud as a third baseman and shortstop in the late-80s, he had three 30-homer and four 30-steal seasons for the Mets.  His best year came in 1989, when he hit .287/.369/.559 with 36 homers, 101 RBI, 41 steals and an NL-leading 104 runs scored.  He also led the NL in homers (38) and RBI (117) in 1991.

The younger Johnson was a 36th-round pick of the Mets out of high school in 2007, but he opted to go to college after the draft.  This will be his professional debut, and considering that he hit .220 for Pace University in his final year in school, it’s probably nothing more than a cameo for him.

So, yeah, it’s a publicity stunt for Rockland.  But what child of the 80’s can pass up a chance to write about Ho-Jo?

Astros stave off AL West elimination, beat the Diamondbacks

Colby Rasmus, Gary Pettis
AP Photo

Facing an elimination number of one, the Astros staved off elimination in the AL West by beating the Diamondbacks on Friday night by a 6-1 margin. The Rangers suffered a heartbreaking loss to the Angels on Saturday afternoon, which temporarily put the Astros’ fate in their own hands.

Colby Rasmus hit a pair of solo homers and Jose Altuve added a solo shot of his own. Starter Collin McHugh tossed seven innings of one-run ball, limiting the Diamondbacks to six hits and a walk with six strikeouts. Reliever Will Harris allowed a solo home run to Paul Goldschmidt in the eighth, but Luke Gregerson closed out the game with a scoreless ninth.

The Astros trail the Rangers by one game in the AL West and lead the Angels by one game for the second AL Wild Card slot. The Rangers can clinch the AL West on Sunday afternoon with a win or an Astros loss. The Astros can clinch the second AL Wild Card on Sunday afternoon with a win or an Angels loss.

The Yankees lost both ends of Saturday’s doubleheader against the Orioles and lead the Astros by only one game for the first AL Wild Card slot.

If the Astros win and the Rangers lose on Sunday, they will play an AL West tiebreaker in Texas. The winner will win the second AL Wild Card if the Yankees win on Sunday, or the first AL Wild Card if the Yankees lose on Sunday.

If the Astros lose and the Angels win on Sunday, the two teams will be tied for the second AL Wild Card. They would play a tiebreaker in Houston, and the winner would play the Yankees in New York in the Wild Card game.

Video: Kelby Tomlinson slides in for an inside-the-park home run

Kelby Tomlinson
AP Photo
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Giants second baseman Kelby Tomlinson looked more like Ladainian Tomlinson the way he was running during Saturday afternoon’s game against the Rockies. In the first inning with one out against starter Chris Rusin, Tomlinson hit a fly ball into the right-center field gap at AT&T Park, a great place to go if you’re in the mood for an inside-the-park home run.

Neither Carlos Gonzalez nor Chris Dickerson could corral the ball before it rolled all the way to the 421-foot marker at the fence. Tomlinson motored around the bases, but Gonzalez made a strong throw into cut-off man D.J. LeMahieu, and LeMahieu made a great throw in to catcher Tom Murphy, but Tomlinson slid in safely just ahead of the tag.

It was an exciting play and the hit proved important as the Giants eked out a 3-2 win against the Rockies.