Chase Headley is an impending free agent and the Padres in 34-45, so it makes sense that they’re shopping him and Jeff Sanders of the San Diego Union Tribune reports that the Blue Jays are interested in the 30-year-old third baseman.
Headley’s stock has plummeted since a breakout 2012 season in which he hit .286 with with 31 homers and an .875 OPS while leading the NL with 115 RBIs. Last season his OPS declined by 130 points and this year he’s hit .199 through 58 games while also missing time with a back injury that required an epidural injection last week.
He’s owed about $6 million for the remainder of this season and the Padres are currently without an actual general manager after firing Josh Byrnes, but Sanders speculates that they might just be willing to clear his salary off the books while acquiring a mediocre prospect in return.
Toronto is currently using Juan Francisco as its primary third baseman and he’s provided plenty of power with 12 homers and an .832 OPS in 57 games, but his defense is sketchy and his .302 career on-base percentage is always an issue.
Angels DH Albert Pujols passed Mark McGwire for sole possession of 10th place on baseball’s all-time home run leaderboard, slugging his 584th career home run in the first inning of Wednesday night’s game against the Blue Jays.
Mike Trout had already slugged a solo home run off of Jays starter Marco Estrada to bring Pujols to the dish. Pujols jumped on an 0-1 cut fastball, sending it out to left-center field, clearing the fence by a few feet.
Pujols, who finished 4-for-4 with the homer and an RBI double, is batting .257/.321/.441 with 24 home runs and 99 RBI on the year. His next target on the home run leaderboard is Frank Robinson at 586.
Orioles closer Zach Britton had appeared in a major league record 43 consecutive games without allowing an earned run, spanning May 5 to August 22. That streak came to an end on Wednesday evening against the Nationals.
The Orioles entered the bottom of the ninth inning holding a 10-3 lead, but reliever Parker Bridwell immediately found himself in hot water. He yielded back-to-back singles to Danny Espinosa and Clint Robinson. He was able to strike out Trea Turner, but walked Jayson Werth to load the bases. Daniel Murphy then crushed his first career grand slam to make it a 10-7 game. That prompted manager Buck Showalter to bring in Britton.
Britton, too, was knocked around. He served up a single to Bryce Harper, followed by a double to Anthony Rendon that scored Harper, pushing the score to 10-8 and ending Britton’s streak. Wilson Ramos reached on a fielder’s choice back to Britton, but the lefty finally finished the game by getting Ryan Zimmerman to ground into a game-ending 4-6-3 double play.
Britton now holds a nice 0.69 ERA with 38 saves and a 61/16 K/BB ratio in 52 innings of work this season.