In news that helps explain why the Indians felt the need to acquire veteran outfielder Chris Dickerson from the Pirates earlier today, Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports that center fielder Michael Bourn’s hamstring strain is “more serious” than initially believed.
Bourn has struggled with hamstring problems since last season, eventually undergoing tendon surgery, and this time around Hoynes says he’ll be out for at least 3-4 weeks. That puts a potential return date at early August even if things go smoothly and given Bourn’s recent history that should probably qualify as very optimistic.
In between the disabled list stints Bourn has been his usual self this season at the plate, hitting .267 with a .695 OPS compared to his career .270 batting average and .699 OPS, but he’s attempted just 10 stolen bases in 66 games after previously being one of the most potent base-stealers in MLB and the Indians didn’t give him a four-year, $48 million contract for his bat.
The Cubs’ defense — or lack thereof this year — has been a topic of conversation as it could help explain why the team hasn’t played at the elite level it played at last year.
Manager Joe Maddon tried to go into detail about that but ended up channeling his inner Rex Ryan. Via CSN Chicago’s Patrick Mooney.
If, in the future, Joe Ross ever complains about a lack of run support, point to his first four starts of the 2017 season.
Ross started on April 19 in Atlanta against the Braves, on April 25 in Colorado against the Rockies, on April 30 at home against the Mets, and on May 23 at home against the Mariners. In those games, the Nats’ offense scored 14, 15, 23, and 10 runs respectively for a total of 62 runs, or an average of 15.5 per start. Ross was the pitcher of record for seven, eight, 10, and 10 runs for a total of 35 runs (8.75 runs per start), which would still make him the major league leader in run support by that restrictive standard.
Among qualified starters — Ross did not qualify — entering Tuesday’s action, the Rockies’ Antonio Senzatela led the way according to ESPN, averaging 7.11 runs of support in nine starts. The Rockies scored double-digit runs in only three of those starts, oddly enough.
Per the Nationals, the 62 runs of support for Ross is a major league record in a pitcher’s first four starts of a season.