Yankees left-hander Cesar Cabral had an eventful Friday night. And not in a good way.
Cabral faced six batters in the bottom of the eighth inning against the Rays last night and failed to retire any of them. After replacing Adam Warren, he gave up a single to Ben Zobrist before throwing a wild pitch and giving up an RBI single to Brandon Guyer. He then Evan Longoria and James Loney before serving up a two-run single to Wil Myers. Finally, he hit Logan Forsythe in the back with a pitch before being ejected by home plate umpire Joe West. Yes, he hit three batters in one inning.
Yankees manager Joe Girardi came out to defend his player, which makes sense since it was clear Cabral wasn’t throwing at anybody intentionally. But he was all over the place and could have hurt someone if he was allowed to continue. The Yankees ended up having to use Shawn Kelley despite being down six runs, so you can understand Girardi’s frustration with the situation, but West did the right thing here.
If Cabral’s performance and ejection wasn’t bad enough, he was designated for assignment by the Yankees after the game. Matt Daley, a 31-year-old right-hander, has been called up to take his place on the active roster.
Nationals starter Stephen Strasburg lasted only two innings in Sunday’s start against the Diamondbacks. The right-hander reportedly had trouble getting loose and it showed: he yielded a hit and three walks to the 10 batters he faced. According to Jorge Castillo of the Washington Post, Strasburg had “some nerve impingement that has been alleviated.”
Manager Dusty Baker expects Strasburg to make his next scheduled start on Saturday at home against the Rockies, Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post reports. Strasburg was examined by doctors, who deemed him to be in good shape — enough to not warrant undergoing an MRI.
Through 20 starts, Strasburg owns a 3.25 ERA with a 141/37 K/BB ratio across 121 2/3 innings. Though the injury scare isn’t what the Nationals hoped for, he’s done well in the first year of his seven-year, $175 million contract extension.
Cubs starter John Lackey didn’t have his best stuff on Tuesday afternoon at Wrigley Field against the White Sox. The right-hander hit four White Sox batters over the course of five innings. He yielded just two runs, though, on five hits and two walks with five strikeouts. He left with a 4-2 lead.
Lackey hit Jose Abreu with one out in the first inning, then hit Abreu again in the fifth. He then hit Matt Davidson and Yoan Moncada shortly thereafter. Chris Beck relieved Carlos Rodon for the White Sox in the bottom of the fifth and promptly hit Ian Happ with a fastball to lead off the frame. Home plate umpire Lance Barksdale issued warnings to both benches and the beanings stopped.
So, how often do pitchers hit four batters in a game? Not that often! The last to do it was the Reds’ Josh Smith on July 4, 2015 against the Brewers. Before that, it was the Nationals’ Livan Hernandez on July 20, 2005 against the Rockies. Lackey is only the ninth pitcher to hit four batters in a game since 2000 and the 26th since 1913. The only other Cubs pitcher to do it besides Lackey was Moe Drabowsky in 1957.