Last night, Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun blasted his fourth and fifth home runs of the season against the Pirates. His second one was a two-run home run off of Pirates closer Jason Grilli to give the Brewers an 8-7 lead, one they would hold onto for the victory.
Braun did it again on Sunday afternoon. With the Brewers trailing 2-1 in the ninth, the Pirates called on Grilli to lock down the save. But Grilli left an 0-1 breaking ball over the plate and Braun yanked it down the left field line for a solo home run, his sixth of the season.
All six of Braun’s home runs have been hit in the state of Pennsylvania. He blasted three in one game against the Phillies on April 8 along with two on Saturday night and the one on Sunday afternoon.
The Brewers, by the way, would go on to win 3-2 in 14 innings.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Rangers have signed outfielder Carlos Gomez to a one-year deal. Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that Gomez will earn $11.5 million next season.
Gomez, 31, struggled with the Astros to a .594 OPS before the club released him in mid-August. The Rangers signed him shortly thereafter and were immediately rewarded. Gomez hit .284/.362/.543 with eight home runs and 24 RBI in 130 plate appearances through the end of the regular season.
As presently constructed, Gomez would likely take over in center field with Nomar Mazara handling left and Shin-Soo Choo in right.
Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that the Diamondbacks are close to signing free agent reliever Fernando Rodney.
Rodney, 39, has been inconsistent over the past two seasons. This past season, he was lights-out with the Padres, posting a 0.31 ERA in 28 appearances. After the Marlins acquired him at the end of June, he struggled to a 5.89 ERA in 39 appearances.
Brad Ziegler, who closed for the Diamondbacks in the first half last season, went to the Red Sox in a midseason trade and is now a free agent. The Diamondbacks had six other relievers register a save, but only Daniel Hudson and Jake Barrett recorded more than one. Adding Rodney will give the club some stability in the ninth inning.