Andy McCullough of the K.C. Star has a story on Omar Infante, who hit a big homer on Wednesday night. He’s doing what he’s doing through a lot of shoulder pain, however, which has sapped his effectiveness for a couple of months. But he’s taking some serious painkillers now which are helping:
“I feel better, because I’m taking strong pills,” Infante said. “That’s helped me a lot. I feel it a little bit in B.P., and I still feel sore in the front of my shoulder. But yesterday I felt more comfortable.”
Specifically, he’s taking Toradol, which is a pretty controversial drug. Many teams have banned it and it’s illegal in some other countries as well. It can cause some serious side effects, including internal bleeding. As Gordon Edes of ESPN Boston wrote in early 2013, Clay Buchholz believes it’s what led to him contracting esophagitis which landed him in the ICU a couple of years ago.
But it is used because, in some cases, teams and players feel they have to use it in order to get through the grind of the 162+ game season and get players in the position to play. In this way it’s much like what every player who has ever used HGH and other banned PEDs have said about why they used them. But that’s different. Because . . . well, it’s different. Trust us on this.
With his Astros trailing the Tigers 2-1, catcher Robinson Chirinos began his at-bat in the bottom of the ninth a triple shy of the cycle. He doubled in the second inning, singled in the fourth, and hit a solo homer in the seventh. Yordan Álvarez and Yuli Gurriel both struck out, leaving the Astros’ fate in the hands of Chirinos against Joe Jiménez. After working the count to 2-1, Chirinos slapped an 85 MPH slider to the gap in right-center field. A diving Travis Demeritte could not come up with the ball, but center fielder Harold Castro fired the ball back in to Gordon Beckham, who then made a perfect throw to Dawel Lugo at third base. Chirinos was tagged out for the final out of the game. No triple, no cycle. The Astros lost 2-1.
Chirinos was attempting to become the first Astro to hit for the cycle since Brandon Barnes on July 19, 2013 against the Mariners.
The Astros entered Wednesday’s game as the largest favorite in 15 seasons, according to ESPN’s David Purdum. The Astros were -500 per Caesars Sportsbook. Other sportsbooks had them at -550. So the Tigers’ win was quite the upset.
Justin Verlander went the distance in the loss. The only blemishes on his line were solo homers to Ronny Rodríguez in the fifth and John Hicks in the ninth. They were the only hits he allowed while walking none and striking out 11.