When Austin Jackson threw out Kosuke Fukudome at home to end Detroit’s 8-7 win over Cleveland on Sunday, it was the first time since 1988 that a game had ended with an 8-2 double play.
Baseball-Reference’s Raphy did the research and saw only five games that had ended that way since 1973, the last coming 23 years ago.
Oddly enough, Jim Leyland was the winning manager in the last one, too. The Pirates beat the Cardinals 3-2 on Sept. 27, 1988 when Luis Alicea, hitting against Pirates closer Jim Gott, flew out to Andy Van Slyke. Jose Oquendo tried to tie the scoring run from third and was cut down by Van Slyke at the plate.
In his latest column for MLB.com, Jon Morosi reports that the Phillies have interest in potentially trading for Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre. While Beltre’s bat would be a help, Morosi notes that the Phillies are just as interested in his professionalism for their otherwise young roster.
Beltre, 39, has been on the disabled list twice already this season due to calf injuries. When he’s been in the lineup, he has managed a .302/.357/.428 triple-slash line along with three home runs and 22 RBI in 182 plate appearances. Beltre is in the last year of his contract, earning $18 million, so he would be a rental for the Phillies.
Third base has been a problem for the Phillies. Their composite .699 OPS from their third basemen is 25th-best in baseball. Maikel Franco has seen the most time at third base, but Scott Kingery and J.P. Crawford (currently on the disabled list) have also seen time there. The Phillies are getting to a point where they may turn the page on Franco, who was once one of the organization’s top prospects. Kingery should see regular time at shortstop with Crawford on the disabled list, so adding a rental third baseman makes sense for the team as presently constructed. The Phillies have also been linked to Manny Machado, but it would make more sense for the club to pursue him in free agency rather than acquire him as a rental.