Carlos Lee homers in first minor league rehab game

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Carlos Lee didn’t show much power for the Astros, homering just four times in 47 games before being placed on the disabled list with a hamstring injury, but last night he went deep in the first game of his minor-league rehab assignment.

Zachary Levine of the Houston Chronicle reports that Lee is rehabbing at Double-A rather than Triple-A because it allows him to stay at the big-league team’s hotel while they’re in Dallas playing the Rangers.

According to Levine the current plan is for Lee to play Double-A games again tonight and tomorrow, at which point he’ll be eligible to come off the disabled list Sunday and could potentially serve as the Astros’ designated hitter in the final interleague road game.

Marty Brennaman announces that 2019 will be his last season

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Cincinnati Reds announcer Marty Brennaman announced a few moments ago that 2019 will be his last season in the broadcast booth.

Brennaman, 76, has broadcast Reds games since 1974 and stands as every bit an institution among Reds fans as any announcer ever has among his local fan base. In 2000 he won the Ford C. Frick Award award, presented annually by the National Baseball Hall of Fame. He called Hank Aaron’s 714th home run, Tom Seaver’s no-hitter, Tom Browning’s perfect game and every other major moment that occurred in a game involving the Reds for the past 44 years. He also, of course, has called three World Series clinchers for the Reds.

Brennaman, also, has been no stranger to controversy, primarily due to his penchant for criticizing Reds players for whom he seems to not to care, with Ken Griffey Jr., Adam Dunn and Joey Votto being among the more notable examples. There are, of course, many Reds fans who share Marty’s views in such instances. It’s an open question as to whether Brennaman has merely shared or reflected that mindset on the one hand or if, on the other hand, he has encouraged it. However you want to view that, there is no denying the fact that Brennaman has never hesitated to speak his mind and that a great deal of the considerable love for him among Reds fans is due in no small part to that.

Brennaman will get and will deserve a farewell tour in 2019. And, in 2020, he will leave some very large shoes to fill.