Baltimore had won 17 straight extra-inning games dating back to April 11, 2012, but that streak came to an end this afternoon against Toronto.
Orioles closer Jim Johnson, who’d been such a huge part of all their late- and extra-inning success, walked Maicer Izturis with the bases loaded to force in the go-ahead run in the 11th inning and the lineup couldn’t rally in the bottom of the frame.
Rich Dubroff of CSNBaltimore.com notes that the 17-game extra-inning winning streak was MLB’s longest since the Pirates won 21 straight in 1959-1960. And the Orioles nearly made it 18 in a row with a walk-off win when J.J. Hardy singled with a runner on second base in the 10th inning, but–as pictured–Manny Machado was thrown out at the plate by Rajai Davis.
The Mariners signed free agent left-hander Wade LeBlanc to a one-year deal, Jerry Crasnick of ESPN reported Saturday. LeBlanc previously signed a minor league agreement with the Yankees, but later requested his release following the team’s Grapefruit League outing on Friday. The Mariners have yet to confirm the deal or disclose its terms.
This is LeBlanc’s second stint with the Mariners in two years. He was initially acquired by Seattle in the summer of 2016 after the Blue Jays traded him for cash considerations, and produced a 4.50 ERA, 1.6 BB/9 and 7.4 SO/9 in 50 innings before getting designated for assignment in August. The 33-year-old southpaw was last seen in the majors with the Pirates, with whom he generated another 4.50 ERA, 2,3 BB/9 and 7.1 SO/9 over 68 innings in 2017. He entered free agency after the club declined his $1.25 million option for 2018.
The signing comes at a fortuitous moment for the Mariners, who were pressed to find additional bullpen depth after right-handed reliever David Phelps tore his ulnar collateral ligament last week. As with most injuries of that kind, Phelps is expected to undergo Tommy John surgery and will miss the entire 2018 season. LeBlanc made a full transition to the bullpen in 2017 and boasts the kind of reverse platoon splits (.216/.270/.389 vs. righties and .292/.333/.500 vs. lefties in 2017) that will make him an effective replacement for the right-handed Phelps.