The A’s and Angels are all square again at the very top of the American League West standings.
Jon Lester struck out seven Anaheim batters and allowed just one run on five hits over seven innings, and Coco Crisp scored the go-ahead tally on an eighth-inning wild pitch as Oakland took down the visiting Halos 2-1 on Saturday. A’s closer Sean Doolittle closed it out for his 20th save of 2014.
Including Sunday’s series finale — which will pit Scott Kazmir against Jered Weaver on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball — the two teams meet eight more times this season. Can the Angels survive the loss of Garrett Richards? Do the Athletics have enough offense without Yoenis Cespedes?
It should continue to be an interesting race as August turns to September.
Your box scores and recaps from Saturday …
White Sox 3, Yankees 5
Rays 4, Blue Jays 5 (10 innings)
Tigers 4, Twins 12 (Game 1)
Mariners 7, Red Sox 3
Orioles 2, Cubs 7
Giants 2, Nationals 6
Astros 2, Indians 3
Pirates 10, Brewers 2
Royals 6, Rangers 3
Padres 2, Diamondbacks 5
Cardinals 6, Phillies 5 (12 innings)
Braves 0, Reds 1
Tigers 8, Twins 6 (Game 2)
Angels 1, Athletics 2
Mets 4, Dodgers 7
Marlins 4, Rockies 5 (13 innings)
This is more significant for basketball fans than baseball fans, but Magic Johnson is taking over basketball operations for the Los Angeles Lakers. Dan Feldman over at PBT has the full story on that.
For our purposes, you probably know that Johnson is part of the Dodgers ownership group. Anthony McCullough of the L.A. Times got comment from the Dodgers, saying that despite his new full-time job, his status with the Dodgers will be unchanged:
Maybe I’m alone in this, but I’m not entirely certain what Magic does with the Lakers, so the first clause in Kasten’s comment may be doing most of the heavy lifting here.
Jon Heyman reports that the Nationals are closing in on a deal with catcher Matt Wieters. Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that it’s a two-year deal. UPDATE: Ken Rosenthal reports that the deal is for two years, at $21 million. There is an opt-out for him after year one. He will get $10 million in 2017 and, if he returns in 2018, he’ll get $11 million.
Wieters was not expected to go this long without signing, but his market, which many thought would be robust, never materialized. The Nats had been rumored to be interested for months, but they were apparently waiting to swoop in late and get what one presumes will be a bargain.
Wieters, 30, finished last season hitting .243/.302/.409 with 17 home runs and 66 RBI in 464 plate appearances. The Nationals currently have Derek Norris and Jose Lobaton, so who falls where in the catcher fight in Washington is unclear, but one presumes that Wieters getting a two-year deal puts him at the top of the depth chart.