On the same day he returned from the disabled list, Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp appeared to twist his ankle sliding into Nationals catcher Kurt Suzuki at home plate in the ninth inning today with his team up 9-2. Kemp was at third base when Carl Crawford hit a ground ball to first baseman Chad Tracy. Tracy fired home to Suzuki, who grabbed the ball for the force out, the last out of the inning. Kemp’s ankle appeared to slide into Suzuki’s foot and bend awkwardly.
You can see the injury by clicking the Vine below (if you’re a bit medically squeamish, like me, you’ll want to leave it alone).
Yasiel Puig, who did not start, entered the game in right field and took Matt Kemp’s spot in the lineup. Skip Schumaker moved from right field to center field. Closer Brandon League got two quick outs, allowed two base runners, and then logged the final out to wrap up the 9-2 win, the Dodgers’ 50th of the season.
After the game, manager Don Mattingly said Kemp’s ankle had some swelling and appeared to be sprained. However, he doesn’t expect Kemp to wind up back on the disabled list, per the Dodgers’ official Twitter.
The Rays were set to honor retiring Red Sox DH David Ortiz with a ceremony prior to Sunday’s game, but as Pete Abraham of The Boston Globe reports, the slugger requested it be canceled out of respect for Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez, who tragically died early Sunday morning in a boating accident.
Ortiz was seen tearing up as the Rays remembered Fernandez and held a moment of silence:
Kudos to Ortiz for doing the right thing.
With a fourth-inning solo home run off of Phillies starter Jake Thompson, Mets outfielder Curtis Granderson reached the 30-homer plateau for the fourth time in his 13-year career. It’s a moment worth celebrating, only there’s one problem: he has just 56 RBI on the season.
There are many reasons for the low RBI total. 24 of Granderson’s 30 homers have come with the bases empty. He came into Sunday’s action hitting just .140 in 124 plate appearances with runners in scoring position and .197 with runners on base. He has hit leadoff for most of the season, meaning he’s had the Mets’ pitchers hitting “ahead” of him in the No. 9 slot as well as the Mets’ catchers typically hitting eighth. Mets catchers, collectively, have a .296 on-base percentage, the second-worst mark in the National League.
Since the end of August, Granderson has hit cleanup with Jose Reyes, Asdrubal Cabrera, and Yoenis Cespedes hitting in front of him. That change hasn’t been for naught, as he has 17 RBI in 21 games since.
Still, Granderson is on pace for the fewest RBI in a 30-homer season. Rob Deer and Felix Mantilla are tied for the record with 64 RBI. Deer (32 HR) accomplished the feat in 1992 with the Tigers and Mantilla (30 HR) in 1964 with the Red Sox. Only eight players have had 70 or fewer RBI in a 30-homer season. Evan Gattis is currently sitting on 30 homers with 68 RBI.