UPDATE: Phillies shortstop Juan Castro broke up the effort with a broken-bat single into left field. Matsuzaka had two outs in the eighth inning at the time. Still, a fine showing from the right-hander, who had a 7.89 ERA and a 1.52 WHIP in four starts since being activated from the disabled list on May 1.
7:32pm: Daisuke Matsuzaka is putting on a show this evening in Philadelphia and actually has a no-hitter through seven innings. He has walked three and fanned five.
We’ll keep an eye on the game to see if Dice-K can make history against one of the National League’s best offenses. He’s up to 93 pitches with six outs to go and David Ortiz has been replaced at first base by the more agile Kevin Youkilis. This baby’s getting serious.
Twins senior director of communications Dustin Morse announced that the Twins will honor former C/1B Joe Mauer by retiring his uniform number 7. Mauer announced his retirement from baseball on November 9.
Mauer will join Harmon Killebrew (No. 3), Tony Oliva (No. 6), Tom Kelly (No. 10), Kent Hrbek (No. 14), Rod Carew (No. 29), Kirby Pucket (No. 34), and Bert Blyleven (No. 28) as Twins to have their numbers retired.
Mauer, 35, spent 15 seasons in the majors, all with the Twins. He posted a career .306/.388/.439 triple-slash line with 143 home runs and 923 RBI. He won the AL MVP Award in 2009, won the batting title three times, earned three Gold Gloves and five Silver Sluggers, and made the AL All-Star team six times. Sadly, his career was limited due to injuries, including a concussion that caused him to move from catcher to first base.
Five years from now, Mauer will appear on the Hall of Fame ballot. There will certainly be some arguments for and against his candidacy. He retired with 55.1 career Wins Above Replacement, according to Baseball Reference, which definitely puts him in the conversation. But, as always, there’s never a consensus.