Carlos Marmol pitched three and two-thirds ineffective innings from the Reds’ Triple-A affiliate in Louisville and then was placed on the restricted list because, according to the Reds, he “left the club without permission.” His agent explained to Jon Heyman what happened:
“A lot has happened in the past year and he decided to go to the Dominican. We aren’t sure when or if he will return this year . . . he just wants to take a mental break. Physically he is fine. He was still throwing in the mid-90s.”
Marmol’s agent said that Marmol wasn’t really AWOL, but that the Reds “weren’t happy” and that he “understands them being upset.”
That makes one of us. If the current version of Carlos Marmol left the team I was trying to make win games and was trying to get fans to come and see I’d be pretty OK with it.
For the third consecutive season, the Astros are AL West champions. The ‘stros clinched the division on Sunday afternoon with a convincing 13-5 win over the Angels. They were backed by three homers from leadoff man George Springer and individual homers from Alex Bregman and Aledmys Díaz.
Springer has the 22nd three-homer game in baseball this season. He’s the first Astro to hit three homers in a game since Yordan Álvarez last month, on August 10.
Justin Verlander lasted five innings in Sunday’s start, yielding two runs on six hits and a pair of walks with five strikeouts. The right-hander is arguably the frontrunner for the AL Cy Young Award, now 20-6 with a 2.53 ERA and a 288/42 K/BB ratio in 217 innings on the year. Verlander is 12 strikeouts shy of the 300-strikeout milestone and six strikeouts short of 3,000 for his career. If the Astros stay on schedule, Verlander would pitch the second-to-last game of the regular season against the Angels.
Sunday’s win marked No. 102 on the season for the Astros. The franchise record is 103 wins set last year. With six games remaining, it seems likely the Astros will set a new record.
The Astros and Yankees both won on Sunday, meaning the Astros remain a half-game ahead in the race for home field advantage. The No. 1 seed will also have the privilege of playing the Wild Card winner, which is down to the Athletics, Rays, and Indians.