Jerry Crasnick of ESPN reports that pitcher Ross Ohlendorf has signed with the Tokyo Yakult Swallows of Japan’s Central League. He’ll make $1.6 million and could earn an additional $400,000 in incentives.
Not a bad deal for Ohlendorf who, after being released by the Royals in spring training, posted a 4.64 ERA and 68/32 K/BB ratio over 65.2 innings with the Cincinnati Reds in 2016. He probably would’ve had to sign a minor league deal if he wanted to pitch in the United States this year and, even if he made a team, would probably have gotten less than a $1 million deal. He made $800,000 in 2016.
Last night in the top of the eighth inning of the Dodgers-Cubs game, Curtis Granderson struck out. Or, at the very least, he should’ve. After the game, the umpire who said he didn’t admitted he screwed up.
While trying to squelch a Dodgers comeback, Wade Davis got Granderson into a 2-2 count. Davis threw his pitch, Granderson whiffed on it, it hit the dirt, and Willson Contreras applied the tag for the out. End of the inning, right? Wrong: Granderson argued to home plate umpire Jim Wolf that he made slight contact with the ball, Wolf, after conferring with the other umps agreed, and Granderson lived to see another pitch.
Before he’d see that pitch, Joe Maddon came out to argue the call and got so agitated about it all he was ejected for the second time in this series. He was right to argue:
It all ended up not mattering, of course, because Granderson struck out eventually anyway.
Normally such things end there, but after the game a reporter got to Wolf and Wolf did something umpires don’t often do: he admitted he blew the call:
It’s good that the bad call ended up not affecting anything. But the part of me who likes to stir up crap and watch chaos rule in baseball really kinda wishes that Granderson had hit a series-clinching homer right after that. At least as long as it didn’t result in Cubs fans burning Chicago to the ground.