There’s not a lot going on with the Chicago White Sox this year. They’re 4-4 right now, but it’s not anything close to a safe bet that they finish at .500 or even near it. They’re rebuilding. They’re going to assess young talent, let it mature and try to trade off the veterans still on the roster. You know the drill.
But tonight they’re doing something noteworthy. They’re starting an outfield consisting entirely of Garcias. And yes, this is the first time in major league history that a team has started an outfield full of guys with the same last name. The Alou brothers played in a handful of games together for the Giants in 1963, but never started together. It makes sense that they wouldn’t, of course. They had a center fielder, name of Mays, who was pretty good.
One of them is Avisail, in his usual right field slot. The other two are utilityman Leury Garcia in center and Willy Garcia, making his major league debut, in left.
You have about five hours to make your way to Target Field in Minnesota to be a part of this momentous historical event.
Newsday’s Marc Carig reports that the Mets may move Asdrubal Cabrera to second base when he returns from the disabled list. Cabrera has been on the disabled list since June 13 with a sprained left thumb, but he’s expected to be activated on Friday.
Cabrera, 31, last played second base in 2014 with the Nationals. He has played shortstop exclusively as a Met the last two seasons. Jose Reyes would continue to play shortstop if the Mets were to go through with the position change. Cabrera would displace T.J. Rivera, who has been playing second base in place of the injured Neil Walker.
In 196 plate appearances this season, Cabrera is hitting .244/.321/.392 with six home runs and 20 RBI. He has made 11 defensive errors, which is tied for the third-most among shortstops behind Tim Anderson (16) and Dansby Swanson (12).
Brewers closer Corey Knebel set a modern major league record for relievers to start a season, as Thursday’s appearance marked his 38th consecutive appearance with a strikeout. He set down the side in order in the ninth inning, striking Josh Bell out to start the frame.
Aroldis Chapman held the record previously, recording a strikeout in his first 37 appearances of the season in 2014 with the Reds.
Knebel, 25, has flown under the radar despite having an incredibly good season. He moved into the closer’s role in mid-May when Neftali Feliz, now a free agent, struggled. After Thursday’s appearance, Knebel is 12-for-15 in save chances with a 0.96 ERA and a 65/17 K/BB ratio in 37 2/3 innings.