Back in July the Blue Jays and the Astros struck a deal involving ten players. It was one of the larger trades you’ll ever see while also containing among the least amount of talent tonnage you’ll ever see. Classic sound and fury kind of deal.
The best player in the deal at the time it was announced was The Player to Be Named Later. He’s been around the league a long time and knows how to play the game the right way. Every team out there has sought The Player to Be Named Later at one time or another. His reputation is that good.
But now he’s been swapped out for an actual player: Kevin Comer, a right-handed pitching prospect the Jays drafted in the second round in 2011. He’s only been in rookie ball so far, having pitched ten games. He’s a marginal prospect at best now, but he did manage to handle the hard-partying nightlife of Bluefield, West Virginia so far, so that’s something.
The Red Sox have clinched the AL East for a third consecutive season, beating the Yankees 11-6 in the Bronx on Thursday night. It’s the third consecutive season in which the Red Sox have won the division, the first time that’s ever been done in club history. In fact, the only other times the Red Sox won the division in back-to-back years were 1903-04 and 1915-16.
AL MVP candidate Mookie Betts went 4-for-5 with a two-run single in the second inning off of Masahiro Tanaka and a three-run homer in the eighth against Aroldis Chapman to put the game out of reach. Jackie Bradley and Brock Holt also hit homers. Red Sox starter Eduardo Rodriguez was on the hook for five runs in 3 2/3 innings, but three of them scored when Heath Hembree inherited a bases-loaded situation, then served up a grand slam to Giancarlo Stanton in the fourth. The rest of the bullpen combined to fire five scoreless innings. Steven Wright had three of them followed by zeroes from Ryan Brasier and Craig Kimbrel.
With the loss, the Yankees’ lead over the Athletics for the first Wild Card slot shrinks to 1.5 games. Meanwhile, the Red Sox will try to clinch home field advantage throughout the playoffs. With a 104-49 record, their closest competitor is the 95-57 Astros. With nine games remaining in the regular season for the Red Sox, they would have to lose every game remaining in the regular season and the Astros would have to win their 10 remaining games in order to fail to claim home field advantage.