Nationals place Dan Haren on the disabled list

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“There’s aches and pains,” Nationals starter Dan Haren told reporters Saturday. “Nothing I haven’t pitched through in the past. Physically, I’m OK.”

But the club’s decision-makers seem to disagree.

According to Amanda Comak of the Washington Times, the Nationals are placing Haren on the 15-day disabled list. The right-hander did have back problems earlier this season and that’s likely the injury that will be cited when the transaction is made official. But this reads like more of a phantom thing, designed to get Haren some time off and a couple of starts against minor league competition.

Haren allowed six earned runs over 3 1/3 innings on Saturday against the Rockies and owns a brutal 6.15 ERA through his first 82 innings this season. He signed a one-year, $13 million deal this past winter.

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UPDATE, 5:06 PM ET: Haren has a stiff shoulder, reports Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post.

Aaron Judge set a new postseason strikeout record

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For a few days, it looked like Aaron Judge was finally hitting his stride in the postseason. He was still striking out at a regular clip, piling more and more strikeouts atop the 16 he racked up in the Division Series, but he was mashing, too. He engineered a three-run homer during Game 3 of the Championship Series, followed by another blast and game-tying double in Game 4. His one-out double helped pad a five-run lead in Game 5, while his 425-footer off of Brad Peacock barely made a dent during a 7-1 loss in Game 6. And then Lance McCullers‘ curveball found and fooled him, as it did five of the 14 batters it met in Game 7:

The strikeout was Judge’s first of the evening and 27th since the start of the playoffs. No other major league batter has racked up that many strikeouts in a single postseason, though Alfonso Soriano’s 26-strikeout record in 2003 comes the closest. Within that record, Judge also collected three golden sombreros (four strikeouts in a single game), narrowly avoiding the dreaded platinum sombrero (five strikeouts in a single game).

It’s an unfortunate footnote to a spectacular year for the rookie outfielder, who decimated the competition with 52 home runs and 8.2 fWAR during the regular season and was a pivotal part of the Yankees’ playoff run. Thankfully, the image of McCullers’ curveball darting just under Judge’s bat won’t be the image that sticks with us for years to come. Instead, it’ll look something like this: