Just a week after losing right-hander Alex White to Tommy John elbow surgery the Astros lost another potential starter, right-hander John Ely, to the same surgery.
Ely, who was acquired from the Dodgers in a trade back in December, began the season at Triple-A after failing to win a rotation spot during spring training. He tossed four shutout innings in his only appearance there before being shut down and will miss the entire season.
Ely led the Pacific Coast League in ERA last season, going 14-7 with a 3.20 ERA and 165 strikeouts in 169 innings, but has a 5.70 ERA in 115 innings as a big leaguer through age 27.
The ALCS had a weird play in Game 4 on Tuesday night, but Game 4 of the NLCS did as well. This one involved Cubs outfielder Albert Almora, Jr. and his attempt to spark a rally in the bottom of the ninth inning against Dodgers reliever Ross Stripling.
After Alex Avila singled, Almora ripped a double to left field, past a diving Enrique Hernandez. The ball rolled to the ivy in front of the wall. Most outfielders there would’ve put their hands up, which would have alerted the umpires to call an immediate ground-rule double. Hernandez didn’t, instead fishing the ball out and firing it back into the infield. Avila had stopped at third base, but Almora kept running. Much to his surprise, he pulled up into third base to see his teammate standing there, resigned to his fate as a dead duck. Third baseman Justin Turner applied the tag on Almora for what he thought was the first out of the inning.
Almora, however, was then sent back to second base after the umpires correctly called a ground-rule double.
Unfortunately for the Cubs, the lucky break didn’t help as closer Kenley Jansen came in and took care of business, retiring all three batters he faced without letting an inherited runner score. The Dodgers won 6-1 and now lead the NLCS three games to none. They’ll try to punch their ticket to the World Series on Wednesday.