Yesterday we noted the improbable rise to the bigs by one Sean Doolittle, the very recently converted slugger who now strikes out guys by the bucketful as a relief pitcher. He made his major league debut last night for the A’s. And he was good.
Doolittle pitched an inning and a third. He threw 21 pitches. All 21 of them were fastballs. He faced four guys, striking out three of them. Doolittle:
“It was really surreal. Still kind of sinking in to be honest,” Doolittle said. “I was so focused on controlling my breathing and trying to calm myself down that it didn’t really let me get too worked up about the situation I was coming into or the guys that I was going to face.”
The guys he faced:
- Nelson Cruz, with a runner on third. Doolitle struck him out after going down 2-0 to him;
- Mike Napoli, who he struck out;
- Yorvit Torreabla, who he struck out; and
- Craig Gentry, who lined out.
Doolittle’s fastballs averaged 94.35 m.p.h. and he topped out at 96.2. As far as debuts go, I think this one qualifies as pretty frickin’ keen.
Yoenis Cespedes, who took a pitch off his hand last week, scaring the bejesus out of Mets fans, said today that he’s “100 percent ready” for the NLDS against the Dodgers.
He sat out Thursday and then went 2-for-7 with a double and a walk in the Mets’ remaining games. While he only had bruises on those fingers, pain and discomfort have, in the past affected guys who have been hit on the hands, messing with grip and power. Cesepdes saying that’s not an issue is a good thing.
Fresh off his season-ending pitching debut, Ichiro Suzuki has decided to re-sign with the Marlins for 2016.
Joe Frisaro of MLB.com reports that an official announcement will be made later today,
Suzuki was one of the worst players in baseball this season, hitting .229 with one homer and a .561 OPS in 153 games as a semi-regular for the Marlins at age 41. He hasn’t topped a .700 OPS since 2010, hitting a combined .268 with a .304 on-base percentage and .342 slugging percentage in 769 games during the past five seasons.
He’s also just 65 hits short of reaching 3,000 for his MLB career and presumably the Marlins like being involved in that upcoming milestone and having the well-liked future Hall of Famer in the clubhouse to keep him around in what will no doubt be a lesser role.