Rafael Furcal had to leave last night’s Cards-Astros game due to a tight left hamstring. It seems now that he’s going to need a coupe of days to recover. Since there are only a couple of days in the season that means that the Cardinals will have to win or lose the wild card without him.
In his place: likely Nick Punto, according to Matt Leach of MLB.com. No word on whether Ryan Theriot will play a part. Which is strange because, after all, the Cardinals were in first place back when he was the starting shortstop.
Oh well. It is what it is.
Mets starter Steven Matz helped his own cause again, belting a solo home run in the top of the third inning of Tuesday’s game against the Phillies. Matz turned on a 1-1 breaking ball from Cy Young contender Aaron Nola, breaking a scoreless tie.
Matz also homered in his previous start against the Marlins last Thursday. According to MLB Stat of the Day, he is the third Mets pitcher to homer in back-to-back starts, joining Tom Seaver (1972) and Ron Darling (1989).
Matz is the fourth full-time pitcher to hit multiple home runs this season, joining the Reds’ Michael Lorenzen (four), and the Cardinals’ John Gant and Miles Mikolas (two each). The last Mets pitcher to hit multiple home runs in a season was Noah Syndergaard, who hit three in 2016.
Along with the bat, Matz has also been dealing on the mound. As of this writing, he has held the Phillies scoreless over five innings despite walking five batters and allowing two hits.