The Orioles are going to be playing a one-game playoff of some sort, whether they tie the Yankees for the division lead or whether they lose it today and have to face either Oakland or Texas in the wild card game.
Know what’s nice to have in a one-game playoff? A hot hand. Chris Davis has a hot hand.
Davis hit a homer last night — the only run in the Orioles’ 1-0 win over Tampa Bay — and has now hit homers in six straight games. In that stretch he has seven homers overall and 13 RBI. For the season he’s at .272/.328/.505 with 33 homers and 85 RBI in 558 plate appearances.
There have been a lot of improbabilities in the Orioles’ magical season. Davis stepping into a full-time role for, really, the first time in his career and raking like he has is one of them.
Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic confirms a report from journalist Américo Celado that White Sox catcher Welington Castillo will be suspended 80 games for violating baseball’s Joint Drug Agreement. Castillo was believed to have used a steroid, but according to Rosenthal, the substance was not a steroid. More details should come on Thursday.
Castillo, 31, entered Wednesday’s action batting .270/.314/.477 with six home runs and 15 RBI in 118 plate appearances. He has gotten the bulk of the work behind the plate, backed up by Omar Narváez.
Castillo’s absence will likely prompt the White Sox to call up Kevan Smith from Triple-A Charlotte. Smith battled an ankle injury in March and April, so he got a late start to the season. In 102 PA at Triple-A, he has hit .283/.343/.457.