Mat Gamel aggravated his surgically repaired right knee over the weekend, but as of yesterday the Brewers seemed optimistic that it was a minor issue and he could resume workouts as soon as today.
Unfortunately because Gamel has basically the worst luck ever Adam McCalvy of MLB.com reports that he’s going to miss the entire season.
Gamel tore his ACL in May of last year, costing the former top prospect a chance to establish himself replacing Prince Fielder as the Brewers’ starting first baseman. He hasn’t played since and now this latest setback costs him an opportunity to fill in for Corey Hart, who’s out for a couple months with a knee injury of his own.
Milwaukee will likely look into bringing in some first base help, but more than that this just really stinks for Gamel. His prospect stock had dipped to the point that he no longer projected as a star, but at age 27 even carving out a decent big-league career figures to be tough now.
When you promote a player from the minors, the first and foremost consideration is whether or not he can help your ball club. But, assuming that’s taken care of, teams should really, really make it a priority to call up dudes with cool sounding names because it makes life more interesting for the rest of us.
The Pirates are doing that. The other night Dovydas Neverauskas made his big league debut. In addition to being the first Lithuanian born-and-raised player in major league history, it’s a solid, solid name. Now the Pirates are making another promotion: Gift Ngoepe.
Yep, Gift Ngoepe. He’s an infielder from South Africa, making the leap to the bigs due to David Freese‘s hamstring injury. Ngoepe, 27, was batting just .241/.308/.379 through 66 plate appearances this season with Triple-A Indianapolis, his ninth in the minors, so he’s not exactly a prospect. But man, that’s a killer name.
It’s also worth mentioning that Gift and Neverauskas were arrested together in a bar fight last August in Toledo, so there is already a good basis for some bonding here.
Good luck, Gift. Gift Ngoepe. Mr. Ngoepe. G-Ngo. Man, I could do this all day.
The Rays beat the Orioles last night, but the play of the game belonged to an Oriole defender.
Evan Longoria was batting and he chopped a ball foul down the third base line. At least it started out foul. As we all know, however, it doesn’t matter where the ball starts, it matters where it is when it crosses the bag.
Manny Machado knows this and didn’t give up on the ball despite it starting several feet in foul territory. He watched it come back, stayed with it and threw out Longoria who, unlike Machado, did give up on it, assuming he’d merely get a strike and another hack. Watch:
Longoria would get Machado back, however, fielding a ball Machado smoked to third base in the ninth inning, recording the second to last out of the game.