A’s center fielder Yoenis Cespedes was penciled into the Oakland starting lineup on Saturday evening against the Tigers for the first time in five games.
But he had to be scratched after experiencing renewed discomfort in his left hand following a pregame workout and has now been placed on the 15-day disabled list. Michael Taylor was brought up from Triple-A Sacramento in a corresponding move.
Cespedes strained a muscle in the back of his left hand during last weekend’s series with the Rays.
His disabled list stint was made retroactive to May 7, and he should be able to return when first eligible.
The 26-year-old Cuban is batting .245/.319/.434 with five home runs, four stolen bases and 21 RBI through the first 199 plate appearances of his major league career. He’s struck out 29 times and drawn nine walks.
For a few days, it looked like Aaron Judge was finally hitting his stride in the postseason. He was still striking out at a regular clip, piling more and more strikeouts atop the 16 he racked up in the Division Series, but he was mashing, too. He engineered a three-run homer during Game 3 of the Championship Series, followed by another blast and game-tying double in Game 4. His one-out double helped pad a five-run lead in Game 5, while his 425-footer off of Brad Peacock barely made a dent during a 7-1 loss in Game 6. And then Lance McCullers‘ curveball found and fooled him, as it did five of the 14 batters it met in Game 7:
The strikeout was Judge’s first of the evening and 27th since the start of the playoffs. No other major league batter has racked up that many strikeouts in a single postseason, though Alfonso Soriano’s 26-strikeout record in 2003 comes the closest. Within that record, Judge also collected three golden sombreros (four strikeouts in a single game), narrowly avoiding the dreaded platinum sombrero (five strikeouts in a single game).
It’s an unfortunate footnote to a spectacular year for the rookie outfielder, who decimated the competition with 52 home runs and 8.2 fWAR during the regular season and was a pivotal part of the Yankees’ playoff run. Thankfully, the image of McCullers’ curveball darting just under Judge’s bat won’t be the image that sticks with us for years to come. Instead, it’ll look something like this: