Jon Hamm is a big St. Louis Cardinals fan and Ryan Fagan of The Sporting News talked to the “Mad Men” star about a bunch of baseball topics, including:
SN: Are you friends with any of the current Cardinals?
HAMM: I know a couple of them. I wouldn’t say “friends” but I’m text pals with (David) Freese and a couple of the guys on the team. I met them at various parties after they won the World Series, and when I did the DVD stuff. I wish I could get back to St. Louis and get to more games. With the unbalanced schedule, it’s harder and harder. They only come out one time to (Los Angeles). It’s a drag. I kind of don’t understand the unbalanced schedule, but that’s where we are.
So, to recap: Don Draper is “text pals” with David Freese and doesn’t like the unbalanced schedule.
No surprise here: The Astros are headed back to the postseason to defend their title following a landslide 11-3 win over the Angels on Friday. This figures to be their third playoff run since 2015, though they have yet to wrap up the AL West with a division title.
First baseman Yuli Gurriel led the charge on Friday, smashing a grand slam in the first inning and tacking on a two-run homer in the second and RBI single in the fifth to help the Astros to a seven-run lead. The Angels eventually returned fire, first with Mike Trout‘s 418-foot homer in the sixth, then with an RBI hit from Francisco Arcia in the seventh, but they couldn’t close the gap in time to overtake the Astros.
On the mound, right-hander Gerrit Cole clinched his 15th win of the year after holding the Angels to seven innings of three-run, 12-strikeout ball. His sixth strikeout of the night — delivered on an 83.1-MPH knuckle curveball to Kaleb Cowart — also marked the 1,000th strikeout of his career to date. He was backed by flawless performances by lefty reliever Tony Sipp and rookie right-hander Dean Deetz, both of whom turned in scoreless innings as the offense barreled toward an 11-3 finish with Jake Marisnick‘s sac bunt and George Springer‘s three-run shot in the eighth.
Despite having qualified for the playoffs, the Astros still carry a magic number of 6 as they look to clinch a third straight division title. They’re currently up against the Athletics, who entered Friday’s contest against the Twins just four games back of first place in the AL West.