Dodgers’ reliever Jonathan Broxton hasn’t pitched since early May due to a bum elbow, but until now there had always been some lingering hope that he’d be back this season. Hope to what end I have no idea because there hasn’t been a truly meaningful Dodgers game for months, but trainers don’t really concern themselves with that sort of thing.
Anyway, Broxton never got right enough to get into rehab appearances and get on a track back to the bigs, and the Dodgers have finally acknowledged the inevitable: that a little over two weeks from now the whole shebang is over until everyone meets up at Camelback Ranch next February and thus there is not enough time to get him back into fighting shape. Well, Jonathan Broxton fighting shape. Which is sort of like a distorted rhombus.
Where Broxton will be then is unclear, because he’s a free agent this winter and not even the Dodgers are in the business of signing faltering closers with bad elbows to contract extensions. Maybe the Yankees will do that, but not the Dodgers.
With his Astros trailing the Tigers 2-1, catcher Robinson Chirinos began his at-bat in the bottom of the ninth a triple shy of the cycle. He doubled in the second inning, singled in the fourth, and hit a solo homer in the seventh. Yordan Álvarez and Yuli Gurriel both struck out, leaving the Astros’ fate in the hands of Chirinos against Joe Jiménez. After working the count to 2-1, Chirinos slapped an 85 MPH slider to the gap in right-center field. A diving Travis Demeritte could not come up with the ball, but center fielder Harold Castro fired the ball back in to Gordon Beckham, who then made a perfect throw to Dawel Lugo at third base. Chirinos was tagged out for the final out of the game. No triple, no cycle. The Astros lost 2-1.
Chirinos was attempting to become the first Astro to hit for the cycle since Brandon Barnes on July 19, 2013 against the Mariners.
The Astros entered Wednesday’s game as the largest favorite in 15 seasons, according to ESPN’s David Purdum. The Astros were -500 per Caesars Sportsbook. Other sportsbooks had them at -550. So the Tigers’ win was quite the upset.
Justin Verlander went the distance in the loss. The only blemishes on his line were solo homers to Ronny Rodríguez in the fifth and John Hicks in the ninth. They were the only hits he allowed while walking none and striking out 11.