Athletics to use off-day to readjust starting rotation

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With Monday’s day off, their last one of the regular season, the Athletics will readjust their starting rotation so that Sonny Gray pitches the regular season finale in Texas against the Rangers, per CSN Bay Area’s Joe Stiglich. The fading A’s, who defeated the Mariners on Sunday afternoon but have lost 12 of their last 17, will likely need every small advantage as they attempt to maintain a hold one of the two American League Wild Card slots.

The adjustment will have the Athletics sending out, in order, Scott Kazmir, Jeff Samardzija, and Sonny Gray in their three-game series against the Rangers at home from Tuesday through Thursday. Samardzija had been pitching ahead of Kazmir. Jon Lester and Jason Hammel remain unaffected at the back of the rotation.

Aaron Judge out of Yankees starting lineup for finale after No. 62

Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports
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ARLINGTON, Texas — Yankees slugger Aaron Judge wasn’t in the starting lineup for New York’s regular-season finale, a day after his 62nd home run that broke Roger Maris’ 61-year-old American League single-season record.

When Judge homered in the first inning Tuesday night, in the second game of a doubleheader against the Texas Rangers, it was his 55th consecutive game. He has played in 157 games overall for the AL East champions.

With the first-round bye in the playoffs, the Yankees won’t open postseason play until the AL Division Series starts next Tuesday.

Even though Judge had indicated that he hoped to play Wednesday, manager Aaron Boone said after Tuesday night’s game that they would have a conversation and see what made the most sense.

“Short conversation,” Boone said before Wednesday’s game, adding that he was “pretty set on probably giving him the day today.”

Asked if there was a scenario in which Judge would pinch hit, Boone responded, “I hope not.”

Judge went into the final day of the regular season batting .311, trailing American League batting average leader Minnesota’s Luis Arraez, who was hitting .315. Judge was a wide leader in the other Triple Crown categories, with his 62 homers and 131 RBIs.

Boone said that “probably the one temptation” to play Judge had been the long shot chance the slugger had to become the first AL Triple Crown winner since Detroit’s Miguel Cabrera in 2012.