Angels left-hander C.J. Wilson has allowed 10 runs in seven innings since returning from a month on the disabled list with hip and ankle injuries.
Wilson looked bad last night against the Dodgers and manager Mike Scioscia told Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times:
This is probably the worst C.J. has struggled since he’s been a starting pitcher, so naturally, you’re concerned. There’s certainly been some head-scratching over his last seven or eight starts. But seeing how hard he works, seeing that it doesn’t look like it’s anything physical, we’re very confident he’s going to get back on that beam and do what we need him to do.
Wilson had a 3.34 ERA on June 19. Since then he’s allowed 32 runs in 24 innings with a 21/14 K/BB ratio and .394 opponents’ batting average.
He originally went on the disabled list with an ankle injury, but then said he discovered while rehabbing that he’d been pitching through a hip issue that had hurt his performance. If the Angels had any appealing fallback options Wilson might already be booted from the rotation, but his job appears to be safe unless general manager Jerry Dipoto can swing a waiver wire trade.
Wilson is under contract for $18 million next season and $20 million in 2016 as part of a five-year, $77.5 million deal.
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.