The Mets have had a rough go of it lately. Injury. Controversy. Bad play. A mascot flipping off the hometown fans, launching a million jokes. Now you can add something else to the mix: a batboy interfering with one of their fielders.
It happened in the top of the fourth inning of this afternoon’s Brewers-Mets tilt. Already trailing 2-0, the Mets allowed the Brewers to load the bases with one out. Eric Sogard came to the plate and, mercifully, hit a pop foul that stayed on the field of play. Mets third baseman Wilmer Flores ranged over to get it but . . . this happened:
Yep, the Brewers’ bat boy — who, if usual custom holds, is actually employed by the home team Mets — slammed into him, preventing him from catching the ball. The umpires originally called interference, which would’ve meant that Sogard was out, but they then reversed themselves as interference calls require intentional conduct and the bat boy seemed to be acting accidentally. Terry Collins went ballistic over the call and got ejected.
Luckily for the Mets, the play did not come back to haunt them as Sogard hit into a double play.
Still: if that play was going to happen to anyone, it was going to be the Mets.
ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reported on Sunday that the Brewers claimed catcher Stephen Vogt off waivers from the Athletics. Vogt was designated for assignment by the Athletics on Thursday.
Vogt, 32, was an All-Star in each of the last two seasons, but struggled this year. He hit .217/.287/.357 with four home runs and 20 RBI in 174 plate appearances.
With the Brewers, Vogt will likely split time behind the plate with Manny Pina. Meanwhlie, the Athletics’ catching situation will be handled by Josh Phegley and Bruce Maxwell.
Astros’ left-hander Dallas Keuchel might not return to the rotation before the All-Star break, Houston manager A.J. Hinch told reporters prior to Sunday’s game. The club placed their star southpaw on the 10-day disabled list on June 8, retroactive to June 5, after a nerve issue was revealed in his neck.
Keuchel has taken a conservative approach to his recovery over the last several weeks, and while he appears to have made some progress, still has yet to throw off the mound. The injury interrupted the start of an outstanding run with the Astros, during which the 29-year-old lefty furnished a 9-0 record with a 1.67 ERA, 2.1 BB/9 and 8.2 SO/9 through his first 75 2/3 innings of 2017.
According to Hinch, it’s certainly possible that Keuchel could return to the team sometime within the next two weeks, but it’s clear that the team would prefer to play it extra safe with their ace. Even assuming that he feels ready to reclaim his spot on the Astros’ pitching staff, he still needs to complete a few key activities before competing in another game — like throwing off a mound, for example. In the meantime, Lance McCullers Jr. will continue to head Houston’s rotation as they try to build on their 12.5-game lead in the AL West.
Hinch’s full comments are below: