UPDATE: Great news: Happ is out of the hospital:
Not sure what the crutches would be for given that he was listed as having a contusion and a lacerated ear. Possibly just for stability. I presume the Blue Jays will update us with his status sometime today.
9:37 AM: Good news from Tampa Bay: Blue Jays starter J.A. Happ is in “good condition” and could be released from the hospital as early as today. Marc Topkin reports that he’s in “good spirits” and is looking forward to “getting back out there again.” UPDATE: The Jays say Happ suffered a head contusion and a laceration to his left ear.
And that, my friends, is what separates professional athletes from most of the rest of us. The rest of us who would be scared absolutely bonkers to step foot on a mound again after getting smacked like Happ was smacked last night.
Great news, though. Here’s hoping he’s back with the team tonight.
Angels DH Albert Pujols passed Mark McGwire for sole possession of 10th place on baseball’s all-time home run leaderboard, slugging his 584th career home run in the first inning of Wednesday night’s game against the Blue Jays.
Mike Trout had already slugged a solo home run off of Jays starter Marco Estrada to bring Pujols to the dish. Pujols jumped on an 0-1 cut fastball, sending it out to left-center field, clearing the fence by a few feet.
Pujols, who finished 4-for-4 with the homer and an RBI double, is batting .257/.321/.441 with 24 home runs and 99 RBI on the year. His next target on the home run leaderboard is Frank Robinson at 586.
Orioles closer Zach Britton had appeared in a major league record 43 consecutive games without allowing an earned run, spanning May 5 to August 22. That streak came to an end on Wednesday evening against the Nationals.
The Orioles entered the bottom of the ninth inning holding a 10-3 lead, but reliever Parker Bridwell immediately found himself in hot water. He yielded back-to-back singles to Danny Espinosa and Clint Robinson. He was able to strike out Trea Turner, but walked Jayson Werth to load the bases. Daniel Murphy then crushed his first career grand slam to make it a 10-7 game. That prompted manager Buck Showalter to bring in Britton.
Britton, too, was knocked around. He served up a single to Bryce Harper, followed by a double to Anthony Rendon that scored Harper, pushing the score to 10-8 and ending Britton’s streak. Wilson Ramos reached on a fielder’s choice back to Britton, but the lefty finally finished the game by getting Ryan Zimmerman to ground into a game-ending 4-6-3 double play.
Britton now holds a nice 0.69 ERA with 38 saves and a 61/16 K/BB ratio in 52 innings of work this season.