Lost in the Nationals’ eventual 8-7 win Saturday against the Braves was another big offensive performance from Atlanta’s Jason Heyward.
Heyward, 24, hit a 420-foot solo home run to right-center field in the bottom of the first inning and then tied the game at 7-7 with a 415-foot two-run shot off closer Rafael Soriano in the bottom of the ninth.
He was 2-for-7 with three RBI and two runs scored.
The Braves wound up losing to the Nats in the 15th inning when Adam LaRoche homered to snap the deadlock, but it was Heyward’s sixth straight multi-hit game and he’s now batting .390/.447/.662 with 11 extra-base hits and 23 runs scored over his last 19 contests.
Atlanta currently holds a 14 1/2 game lead in the National League East.
The Rangers outrighted reliever Shawn Tolleson off the 40-man roster on Wednesday. Rather than accept the assignment to Triple-A Round Rock, Tolleson has opted to become a free agent, Rangers executive VP of communications John Blake reports.
Tolleson, 28, emerged as a closer for the Rangers in 2015, but his follow-up campaign this year was dreadful. He finished with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He eventually went on the 60-day disabled list with a back injury.
Despite the nightmarish season, it’s easy to see a team deciding to take a flier on Tolleson for the 2017 season.
Indians slugger Carlos Santana hasn’t played in the outfield in a major league game since 2012, but the Indians are strongly considering starting him in left field for Game 3 of the World Series at Wrigley Field on Friday, MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian reports. As the game is hosted in a National League park, there is no DH rule in effect, so the Indians might otherwise have to keep Santana on the bench.
Santana is hitless in six at-bats in the World Series thus far, but he has drawn two walks. He has overall not had a great postseason, carrying an aggregate .564 OPS in 40 plate appearances since the beginning of the playoffs. Still, during the regular season, he had an .865 OPS so he can certainly be a threat on offense at any given moment.