Ryan Braun had himself a pretty good night last night, but Matt Kemp is still going strong.
Bolstering his case for National League MVP, Kemp went 1-for-4 with a solo home run in last night’s 2-0 win over the Padres. The home run was his 37th of the season, tying him with Albert Pujols for the National League lead. He currently leads the league with 119 RBI, which is six more than Ryan Howard and Prince Fielder.
The triple crown is still a very real possibility, but the batting title will be the most interesting thing to watch over the final few games of the season. As of this morning, Jose Reyes (.32948) holds a slim advantage over Braun (.32909) and Kemp (.32586).
Your Friday box scores:
Dodgers 2, Padres 0
Reds 3, Pirates 4
Braves 7, Nationals 4
Orioles 3, Tigers 4 (11 innings)
Twins 5, Indians 6
Rockies 2, Astros 11
Blue Jays 5, Rays 1
Marlins 1, Brewers 4
Mariners 3, Rangers 5
Royals 11, White Sox 1
Cubs 5, Cardinals 1
Giants 1, Diamondbacks 3
Athletics 3, Angels 1
Phillies and Mets – PPD
Red Sox and Yankees – PPD
The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.
Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.
Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.
The Phillies announced on Tuesday that the club traded pitcher Alec Asher to the Orioles for a player to be named later.
Asher, 25, was the victim of a roster crunch. He was not going to make the 25-man roster and the starting rotation at Triple-A Lehigh Valley was already full. The Phillies acquired him from the Rangers in the July 2015 Cole Hamels trade.
Asher had good results in 27 2/3 innings in the big leagues last year, posting a 2.28 ERA with a 13/4 K/BB ratio. While it didn’t show in those stats, the right-hander sometimes struggles with command and he doesn’t miss bats often enough to make up for it. The Orioles, however, are happy to add some pitching depth.