Lidge aiming to rejoin Phillies on Monday

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lidge throwing.jpgPhillies reliever Brad Lidge tossed a successful bullpen session before Thursday’s game at Citi Field and could be activated from the disabled list as soon as Monday, according to MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki.

Lidge threw 40 pitches in the short workout and reported no pain or discomfort in his throwing elbow.  He was placed on the 15-day disabled list back on May 10 with right elbow inflammation and was given a cortisone shot about a week later that seems to have worked like a charm. 

Jose Contereras has been manning ninth-inning duties for the Phils with Lidge sidelined and owns a lights-out 0.63 ERA and 0.70 WHIP through 16 appearances.  Contreras is probably going to hang onto the gig unless Lidge starts blowing batters away right out of the gate.  Based on what we’ve seen from Lidge lately, that’s not likely to happen.

José Ramirez’s 17-pitch at-bat kickstarts Indians’ five-run comeback in ninth inning

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With his team trailing 8-3 to begin the bottom of the ninth inning of Sunday’s game against the Astros, Indians third baseman José Ramirez eventually won a 17-pitch at-bat against closer Ken Giles, ripping a double off of the wall in right field. The Indians would go on to score five runs on seven hits to tie the game against Giles and Hector Rondon. Ramirez almost won the game in his second at-bat of the ninth inning, but first basebamn Yuli Gurriel made a terrific diving catch on a line drive otherwise headed for the right field corner.

Giants first baseman Brandon Belt set a new modern record for the longest at-bat last month, seeing 21 pitches against the Angels’ Jaime Barria. The Astros’ Ricky Gutierrez sfaw 20 pitches from the Indians’ Bartolo Colon on June 26, 1998, which was the previous record. Kevin Bass saw 19 pitches from the Phillies’ Steve Bedrosian in 1988. There have also been five 18-pitch at-bats from Brian Downing, Bip Roberts, Alex Cora, Adam Kennedy, and Marcus Semien.

Sunday’s game wound up going 14 innings. The Astros pulled ahead 9-8 in the top of the 13th on a solo home run from Evan Gattis. However, the Indians’ Yonder Alonso responded with a solo shot of his own in the bottom of the 13th to re-knot the game at 9-9. Greg Allen then lifted a walk-off solo homer in the bottom of the 14th to give the Indians a 10-9 win.

After Sunday’s effort, Ramirez is batting .292/.389/.605 with 15 home runs, 37 RBI, 34 runs scored, and seven stolen bases. According to FanGraphs, his 3.5 Wins Above Replacement ranks third across baseball behind Mike Trout (4.4) and Mookie Betts (4.1). They’re the only players at three wins or above.