Things which make me wish I didn’t watch “Wayne’s World” and fall asleep on the couch at 11pm last night: the Dodgers-Rays game.
The Dodgers found themselves down 6-0 heading into the bottom of the seventh last night, but then scored one in the seventh, two in the eighth and four in the ninth to stun the Tampa Bay Rays 7-6.
The winning run came on what should have been an inning-ending double play when Fernando Rodney did this with a comebacker:
Of course it shouldn’t have even gotten to that point. By then Rodney had blown a three-run lead. He was helped by the Rays’ defense, which allowed an unearned run to score off of an otherwise impressive David Price in the seventh. Then Jake McGee, Josh Lueke and Joel Peralta combined to allow a couple more in the eighth, setting the stage for Rodney’s awful inning.
As for the Dodgers: they have been living a charmed life since June. Put them together with the seemingly equally charmed Pirates and a Braves team that has looked like a juggernaut of late, and the National League playoffs are shaping up to be all kinds of fun.
Nationals first baseman Ryan Zimmerman has played in exactly one Grapefruit league game this year, and that was way back on March 2. Since then he has been totally absent from the Nats’ big league spring games, playing instead on the back fields in sim games and in minor league contests.
While that’s not an unusual course of action for an injured or rehabbing player, both Zimmerman and the Nationals insist that there is nothing wrong with him. Per this report from MASN’s Mark Zuckerman, they’re saying that Zimmerman “simply prefers to get his work done in the more controlled environment of minor league games, where the rules are lax.” He doesn’t have to dive for balls, he can lead off every inning, etc. Manager Dave Martinez says Zimmerman simply doesn’t like the usual spring training grind and that this is working for him so he’s fine with it too.
Are you buyin’ that? Not sure I’m buyin’ that.
I suppose weirder things have happened. The Minnesota Twins once let Jack Morris go back to his farm in between starts rather than stay with the club. Other accommodations have been made for veterans, especially in spring training. But this is way more in keeping with a team hiding an injury. Though I have no idea why the Nats would choose to hide an injury to Zimmerman. They’ve talked at length about Daniel Murphy‘s knees and Adam Eaton‘s seemingly never-ending rehab. If Zimmerman has some aches and pains, you’d think they’d talk about it.
On the other hand, if this is a legit story and it is simply an accommodation for a veteran who doesn’t like the normal spring training grind, look for Zimmerman to be a trailblazer, because there are a LOT of dudes who hate spring training too and would love to change things up like this.