Jaime Garcia looked about as good as the Cards could have hoped for in his return from an eight-week stint on the disabled list Sunday at Busch Stadium.
The left-hander struck out a career-high 10 batters while allowing just two unearned runs and five hits over eight strong innings against the visiting Pirates.
Garcia threw 73 of his 107 pitches for strikes and didn’t walk a single batter, lowering his ERA (now 4.00) nearly a half-point from where it was on June 6 (4.48) when he first landed on the 15-day disabled list because of an impingement in his throwing shoulder.
Garcia is the first Cardinals left-hander to tally double-digit strikeouts in a game since Mark Mulder in May of 2005 and he’s the first to hit that mark without issuing a walk since Rick Ankiel in September 2000.
The Rangers outrighted reliever Shawn Tolleson off the 40-man roster on Wednesday. Rather than accept the assignment to Triple-A Round Rock, Tolleson has opted to become a free agent, Rangers executive VP of communications John Blake reports.
Tolleson, 28, emerged as a closer for the Rangers in 2015, but his follow-up campaign this year was dreadful. He finished with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He eventually went on the 60-day disabled list with a back injury.
Despite the nightmarish season, it’s easy to see a team deciding to take a flier on Tolleson for the 2017 season.
Indians slugger Carlos Santana hasn’t played in the outfield in a major league game since 2012, but the Indians are strongly considering starting him in left field for Game 3 of the World Series at Wrigley Field on Friday, MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian reports. As the game is hosted in a National League park, there is no DH rule in effect, so the Indians might otherwise have to keep Santana on the bench.
Santana is hitless in six at-bats in the World Series thus far, but he has drawn two walks. He has overall not had a great postseason, carrying an aggregate .564 OPS in 40 plate appearances since the beginning of the playoffs. Still, during the regular season, he had an .865 OPS so he can certainly be a threat on offense at any given moment.