Joel Peralta got one out as the Rays beat the A’s 7-2 on Friday. In this case, that was good enough to get him a save.
Peralta qualified for the save since the tying run was on deck as he entered. Brandon Gomes gave up a leadoff homer to Cliff Pennington in a 7-1 game to start the ninth and then allowed a single, hit a batter and walked another in the process of recording two outs. Peralta entered with the bases loaded and got Kila Ka’aihue, a .229 career hitter, to ground out to first to end the game.
Between Peralta and Fernando Rodney, the Rays have 11 saves this season, but four of them have been of the one- or two-out variety. In just two of the saves has the reliever protected a one-run lead for one or more innings.
Dodgers southpaw Clayton Kershaw is nearing his return to the mound, according to club manager Dave Roberts. Both Kershaw (left biceps tendinitis) and fellow lefty Rich Hill (left middle finger blister) are scheduled to toss simulated games on Saturday; depending on the outcome, Roberts says Kershaw could forgo a minor league assignment and slot back into the rotation by Thursday.
Kershaw, 30, was diagnosed with biceps tendinitis as the team closed out their Mexico Series at the start of the month. He has not made a start in several weeks, but was finally able to resume throwing on Sunday and managed to get through two successful bullpen sessions. Though Dodgers’ ace hasn’t been completely injury-free over his 11-year career in the majors, this is the first significant issue he’s had with his pitching arm so far. The team is expected to take every precaution with the lefty, and will likely limit him to just four innings during Saturday’s simulated game.
Prior to his injury, Kershaw was working on another dominant run with the club, sporting a 2.86 ERA, 2.0 BB/9 and 9.8 SO/9 through his first 44 innings of the season. While Kershaw, Hill and left-handed starter Hyun-Jin Ryu served their respective terms on the disabled list this month, the Dodgers utilized a combination of relievers Ross Stripling and Brock Stewart, both of whom impressed during their limited time in the rotation.