Geoff Blum pulled a muscle in his side while taking batting practice yesterday, so the Diamondbacks have placed the 39-year-old on the disabled list while calling up 2009 first-round pick A.J. Pollock to take his roster spot.
Blum received just 14 total plate appearances through 10 games and the presence of Willie Bloomquist and John McDonald means the Diamondbacks remain well-stocked with light-hitting veteran utility men.
Pollock’s prospect stock has dropped since he went 17th overall in 2009, but the 24-year-old center fielder was off to a strong start at Triple-A after hitting .307 with minimal power and 36 steals at Double-A last season. Center fielder Chris Young and right fielder Justin Upton are both hurting, so he could see some regular action.
The ALCS had a weird play in Game 4 on Tuesday night, but Game 4 of the NLCS did as well. This one involved Cubs outfielder Albert Almora, Jr. and his attempt to spark a rally in the bottom of the ninth inning against Dodgers reliever Ross Stripling.
After Alex Avila singled, Almora ripped a double to left field, past a diving Enrique Hernandez. The ball rolled to the ivy in front of the wall. Most outfielders there would’ve put their hands up, which would have alerted the umpires to call an immediate ground-rule double. Hernandez didn’t, instead fishing the ball out and firing it back into the infield. Avila had stopped at third base, but Almora kept running. Much to his surprise, he pulled up into third base to see his teammate standing there, resigned to his fate as a dead duck. Third baseman Justin Turner applied the tag on Almora for what he thought was the first out of the inning.
Almora, however, was then sent back to second base after the umpires correctly called a ground-rule double.
Unfortunately for the Cubs, the lucky break didn’t help as closer Kenley Jansen came in and took care of business, retiring all three batters he faced without letting an inherited runner score. The Dodgers won 6-1 and now lead the NLCS three games to none. They’ll try to punch their ticket to the World Series on Wednesday.