From the Associated Press, via MSNBC.com:
St. Louis’ 1-0 victory over Philadelphia in Game 5 of the NL division series Friday night received a 5.1 rating and was seen by 8,389,000 viewers on TBS, a National League record for first-round games on cable.
For reference, the NLDS Game 5 played between the Diamondbacks and Brewers at 4:05 p.m. ET drew a 3.0 rating and was seen by 4,592,000 viewers.
The numbers aren’t surprising. Philadelphia is a major media market and the Cardinals have a wide-ranging following. Milwaukee, on the other hand, is baseball’s smallest market and the Snakes are still working on cultivating a dedicated fan base. Add to that the different start times and it all makes plenty of sense.
It’s doubtful that the NLCS between the Cards and Brewers will be a major ratings hit — and the same goes for the ALCS — but more of the same would surely be satisfactory in the eyes of Major League Baseball.
Jon Morosi of MLB Network and FOX Sports reports that the Mariners have acquired starter Chris Heston from the Giants. The Giants will receive a player to be named later, per Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports.
Heston, 28, logged only five innings in the majors this past season as he battled an oblique injury and otherwise spent most of his time with Triple-A Sacramento. Heston was solid out of the Giants’ rotation in 2015, posting a 3.95 ERA with a 141/64 K/BB ratio in 177 2/3 innings over 31 starts.
Heston will be under team control through 2021. He’ll provide depth for the Mariners’ rotation in the meantime.
Joe Nathan‘s agent, David Pepe, says his client wants to pitch in 2017, per ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick. “He’s like the Energizer Bunny,” Pepe said.
Nathan, 42, came back from Tommy John surgery in July, pitching two scoreless innings for the Cubs with four strikeouts and two walks. The Cubs released him and the Giants picked him up, and Nathan went on to pitch 4 1/3 scoreless innings down the stretch with five strikeouts and two walks.
According to FanGraphs, Nathan’s velocity wasn’t where it used to be, which is to be expected of a pitcher in his 40’s coming back from major elbow surgery. Still, with teams always on the hunt for bullpen depth, it would be shocking if Nathan didn’t get any bites before spring training starts.