Daisuke Matsuzaka has been surprisingly useful for the Mets this season in a swingman role, but now he’s headed to the 15-day disabled list due to right elbow inflammation.
Matsuzaka appeared in discomfort after throwing two innings in relief on Thursday against the Brewers and was sent back to New York in order to undergo an MRI. The 33-year-old has posted a 3.87 ERA across nine starts and 19 relief appearances this season. While he has issued 44 walks in 74 1/3 innings, he has 71 strikeouts and has held opposing batters to a .202 average.
With Matsuzaka going on the disabled list, the Mets have brought back right-hander Buddy Carlyle from Triple-A Las Vegas. The veteran reliever was outrighted off the 40-man roster earlier this week following the return of Jon Niese.
The ALCS had a weird play in Game 4 on Tuesday night, but Game 4 of the NLCS did as well. This one involved Cubs outfielder Albert Almora, Jr. and his attempt to spark a rally in the bottom of the ninth inning against Dodgers reliever Ross Stripling.
After Alex Avila singled, Almora ripped a double to left field, past a diving Enrique Hernandez. The ball rolled to the ivy in front of the wall. Most outfielders there would’ve put their hands up, which would have alerted the umpires to call an immediate ground-rule double. Hernandez didn’t, instead fishing the ball out and firing it back into the infield. Avila had stopped at third base, but Almora kept running. Much to his surprise, he pulled up into third base to see his teammate standing there, resigned to his fate as a dead duck. Third baseman Justin Turner applied the tag on Almora for what he thought was the first out of the inning.
Almora, however, was then sent back to second base after the umpires correctly called a ground-rule double.
Unfortunately for the Cubs, the lucky break didn’t help as closer Kenley Jansen came in and took care of business, retiring all three batters he faced without letting an inherited runner score. The Dodgers won 6-1 and now lead the NLCS three games to none. They’ll try to punch their ticket to the World Series on Wednesday.