Wandy Rodriguez made his debut for the Pirates on Saturday evening in Houston, against his light-hitting former team. The results were decent enough.
Rodriguez surrendered three earned runs on six hits, fanning five Astros batters but issuing five walks. Only 57 of his 103 pitches were strikes.
We’ll chalk some of the control issues up to jitters.
Rodriguez left the game at a 3-3 score. Pittsburgh made it 4-3 in the eighth and would hold that lead.
The Pirates are now 58-42, two games back of the Reds in the National League Central standings. Wandy will face Cincinnati next time out.
Your Saturday box scores and recaps:
Cardinals 2, Cubs 3
Tigers 1, Blue Jays 5
Red Sox 8, Yankees 6
Dodgers 10, Giants 0
Royals 3, Mariners 4
Athletics 6, Orioles 1
Pirates 4, Astros 3
Nationals 4, Brewers 1
Indians 5, Twins 12
Phillies 1, Braves 2
Padres 2, Marlins 4
White Sox 5, Rangers 2
Reds 9, Rockies 7
Mets 3, Diamondbacks 6
Rays 3, Angels 0
The Phillies and Red Sox appear intent on pursuing free agent first baseman Carlos Santana, MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports. Santana rejected a one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Indians on Thursday and is expected to draw widespread interest on the market this winter. The Mets, Mariners, Angels and Indians could make a play for the infielder, though no serious offers have been made this early in the offseason.
Santana, 31, is coming off of a seven-year track with the Indians. He batted .259/.363/.455 with 23 home runs and 3.0 fWAR last season, making 2017 the fourth-most valuable year of his career to date. Although he was primarily stationed at first base over the last year, he could step back into a hybrid first base/DH role with the Red Sox, who are hurting for infield depth with Hanley Ramirez still working his way back from shoulder surgery.
As for Santana’s other suitors, the Mariners are far less likely to pursue a deal after trading for Ryon Healy last Wednesday. Neither the Mets nor the Phillies have a DH spot to offer the veteran infielder, and the Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins appears to be blocking the way at first base. Then again, Santana may not find a more enticing offer outside of Cleveland, where Edwin Encarnacion might otherwise be the club’s best option at first base. During the GM meetings, Indians’ GM Mike Chernoff said he “love to have both [Santana and Jay Bruce] back” in 2018, but hasn’t backed up that love with any contract talks just yet.