Cardinals shortstop Jhonny Peralta jumped all over this fastball from Cubs reliever Pedro Strop with two strikes and two outs in the top of the ninth inning Wednesday night at Wrigley Field …
Great call there by Cardinals television play-by-play man Dan McLaughlin. St. Louis would hold that 6-5 lead through the bottom of the ninth with closer Trevor Rosenthal picking up his 25th save of the season.
Ugly scene Wednesday night at Kauffman Stadium.
Royals left fielder Alex Gordon was down on the ground for several minutes and eventually had to be taken off on a cart after injuring his left leg near the warning track while chasing after a ball in the fourth inning. It’s being called a left groin strain, but that’s just an initial diagnosis. An MRI is in the works.
MLB.com has video of the injury that unfortunately isn’t embeddable. The way his left leg twisted as he tried to replant — man, it looked really, really bad.
Gordon is among the best defensive players in the majors and he’s batting .279/.394/.457 with 11 home runs and 39 RBI in 78 games this season for the American League Central-leading Royals.
He was named a starter for the American League All-Star team on Sunday evening.
UPDATE, 11:29 p.m. ET: Bad news from the Royals’ postgame clubhouse …
Cubs right-hander Jason Hammel threw only 12 pitches in a flawless top of the first inning Wednesday night against the rival Cardinals, but Clayton Richard was spotted warming up in the bottom half of the first and took the mound in the top of the second. Patrick Mooney of CSNChicago.com has the reason …
Hammel’s next scheduled start isn’t until after the All-Star break, so he shouldn’t miss a rotation turn. But the Cubs need all the wins they can get against the division-leading Cardinals and Hammel obviously gave them a much better chance Wednesday than Richard, who allowed two runs in his first frame. Hammel boasts a 2.86 ERA, 0.95 WHIP, and 105/18 K/BB ratio in 103 2/3 total innings this season for third-place Chicago.
In this era of Major League Baseball, a failed seven-figure agreement with a player isn’t a huge blow.
But it’s not an insignificant bit of news either.
Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com reports that the Cardinals have designated Aledmys Diaz for assignment — a 24-year-old Cuban infielder who was signed out of Cuba last March for four years, $8 million. The move opened up a 40-man roster for Dan Johnson, who is starting at first base for the Cardinals on Wednesday night at Wrigley Field.
Diaz was batting just 235/.292/.344 with three home runs and 21 RBI through 67 games this season at Double-A Springfield. He’ll probably pass through waivers because of the money he is owed, but his future in baseball is not particularly bright.
Justin Upton was a late scratch from the Padres’ starting lineup Wednesday night against the Pirates due to soreness in his left oblique. Will Venable is starting in left field and Melvin Upton Jr. is playing center versus Pittsburgh starter Charlie Morton.
Upton acknowledged to MLB.com’s Corey Brock that he’s been experiencing discomfort in his oblique since making a difficult catch in St. Louis last week. He’s considered day-to-day for now, but it sounds like an extended absence may be in order.
Upton, 27, has slashed .259/.338/.434 with 14 home runs, 46 RBI, 16 stolen bases, and 44 runs scored in 84 games this season for the Padres, who entered play Wednesday with a disappointing 39-47 record.
There’s been talk that Upton might become a trade chip for the Friars later this month.