There was a tremendous pitcher’s duel in Chicago tonight, as the Brewers edged the White Sox 1-0 in 10 innings.
With the Brewers scoring in the top of the 10th, Zack Greinke was able to get the win. He allowed three hits in nine innings of work. Closer John Axford, who has been very shaky, took over from there and pitched a hitless inning for his 13th save.
Chris Sale was just about as good for the White Sox, allowing four hits in eight innings. Addison Reed followed that with a perfect ninth, but Jesse Crain couldn’t keep it going in the 10th and took his first loss of the year after Aramis Ramirez doubled and Rickie Weeks singled in pinch-runner Nyjer Morgan.
Today’s game was the second this season to go scoreless into extra innings. The Giants beat the Phillies 1-0 in 11 innings on April 18. Matt Cain went nine scoreless and Cliff Lee went 10 scoreless in that one, with Clay Hensley eventually getting the win.
The Padres may have some interest in acquiring Phillies third baseman Maikel Franco, according to a recent report from Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. It seems unlikely that the team would deal their starting third baseman with J.P. Crawford (fractured left hand) sidelined through July; to that end, however, they signed infielder Danny Espinosa as minor league depth on Friday and have reportedly been eying the Rangers’ Adrian Beltre, among other veteran options.
Franco, 25, entered Sunday batting .255/.297/.425 with nine home runs and a .721 OPS in 229 plate appearances this season. While he has yet to live up to the .280+ average, 1.9+ fWAR he posted during his rookie campaign, he’s been a solid 20+ home run producer over the last few years and shown some stability at the hot corner. He’s also under team control for the next three years and could provide some much-needed insurance behind the Padres’ current third base option, 27-year-old Christian Villanueva.
Rosenthal notes that the Phillies could strike a deal for one of San Diego’s relievers, though no one specific has been connected to the team yet — and the club probably wouldn’t be able to finesse a one-for-one deal given the quality of the Padres’ pitchers. The Phillies’ bullpen has looked downright abysmal over the last month, placing 11th-worst in the league with a collective 5.34 ERA and 0.3 fWAR. Their failure to procure a viable reliever beyond Seranthony Dominguez, Victor Arano and Edubray Ramos lends a certain urgency to any potential deal they make over the next few weeks, though the official trade deadline is still over a month away.