Entering Sunday’s matinee against the Indians, Justin Verlander was prepared to ink his name in the history books yet again. The Tigers’ right-hander was riding a 331-game streak of consecutive appearances with at least one strikeout — a streak so impressive, in fact, that it ranked sixth-longest among all MLB pitchers, tied with Curt Schilling’s own 331-game streak from 1993 to 2005. During what should have been Verlander’s tie-breaking 332nd game, however, the righty was tagged for nine hits and seven runs, failing to fan even one of 22 batters before getting pulled in the fourth inning. The streak was over.
According to MLB.com’s Jason Beck, the last time Verlander recorded a zero-strikeout game was on April 28, 2007. The 24-year-old hurler was fresh off of a Rookie of the Year award-winning season and his first postseason appearance with the Tigers. He didn’t look it that afternoon, however, handing the Twins five runs on eight hits in the first three innings. It was the third such start of his career to date, preceded by a seven-run implosion against the White Sox and an unorthodox eight-inning shutout against the Twins, both in 2006.
Following Verlander’s snafu on Sunday, the Tigers dropped their second consecutive game to the Indians, 11-8. A few zero-strikeout games every decade isn’t reason for concern, but it didn’t do much to improve Verlander’s pitching line, either. The Tigers’ ace currently holds a 4.96 ERA, 4.3 BB/9 and 4.6 SO/9 through 98 innings and has gone 5-5 in 17 starts this year.
Former major league outfielder Raul Mondesi has been sentenced to eight years in prison and fined 60 million pesos for corruption as mayor of San Cristobal in the Dominican Republic, Hector Gomez reports. Mondesi served a six-year term as mayor from 2010-16. He initially ran on the ballot of the Dominican Liberation Party, but switched to the Dominican Revolutionary Party over a year later.
Mondesi, 46, played parts of 13 seasons in the majors for the Dodgers, Blue Jays, Yankees, Diamondbacks, Pirates, Angels, and Braves. He won the NL Rookie of the Year Award in 1994 with the Dodgers, made one All-Star team, and won two Gold Glove Awards. He is the father of the Royals infielder of the same name.
The paint company Sherwin Williams created a neat promotion at Angel Stadium. There’s a giant paint can with the brand name in left-center field. If a player hits a ball into the can, Sherwin Williams will donate $1 million to the Angels Baseball Foundation, the Angels’ charity for kids.
Angels outfielder Justin Upton appeared to trigger that charitable contribution when he hit a solo home run to left-center field against Indians closer Cody Allen on Tuesday night. The ball bounced in front of the can and then went in on a hop.
ESPN reports that Sherwin Williams is using a technicality to try and get out of the obligation. Because Upton’s home run didn’t land in the can on the fly, Sherwin Williams is saying they’re not obliged to make the $1 million donation. In 2014, Frazee Paint and the Angels agreed to the paint can promotion and indeed the press release says, “…if an Angels player hits a home run that lands in the can on the fly, the company will make a $1 million donation to benefit the Foundation’s efforts to improve the lives of children in the community.” Frazee Paint is now owned by Sherwin Williams.
According to Forbes, Sherwin Williams is worth $29.2 billion, ranking at 724 on the Global 2000. One would imagine ponying up the relatively minuscule sum of $1 million would be worth it rather than taking the P.R. hit from the dozens of articles that have been and will continue to be written about the company’s pedantry over a charitable donation to needy children.
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