Update #2 (10:03 PM EST): Juan C. Rodriguez of the Sun Sentinel reports that the Marlins are receiving minor league pitchers Kendry Flores and Luis Castillo from the Giants in exchange for McGehee.
Update (7:15 PM EST): Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY confirms that McGehee is indeed headed to San Francisco. It’s unclear at the moment exactly who the Marlins are receiving in return.
The Marlins added yet another infielder on Friday afternoon, acquiring Martin Prado along with David Phelps in a trade with the Yankees. Having also inserted Dee Gordon and Michael Morse into the mix, the Fish now have a surplus of infielders, including third baseman Casey McGehee.
The Giants, now without Pablo Sandoval and having missed out on Chase Headley, are in want of a passable major leaguer to man the hot corner. Rodriguez hears that the Giants and Marlins are closing in on a trade involving McGehee that would send minor league pitching to Miami.
McGehee, 32, hit .287/.355/.357 with four home runs and 76 RBI during the 2014 season. By traditional metrics, McGehee was among the more productive hitters during the first half of last season, carrying a .321 average and 53 RBI into the All-Star break. However, McGehee’s power — once responsible for a 23-homer output in 2010 — was nonexistent and fell well below the average for third basemen.
Then again, McGehee has a pulse and can navigate his way to third base, so that means he’s in play for the Giants.
The Astros walked off 3-2 winners in the bottom of the 11th inning of ALCS Game 2 against the Yankees. Carlos Correa struck the winning blow, sending a first-pitch fastball from J.A. Happ over the fence in right field at Minute Maid Park, ending nearly five hours of baseball on Sunday night.
Correa’s heroics were precipitated by two highly questionable calls by home plate umpire Cory Blaser in the top half of the 11th.
Astros reliever Joe Smith walked Edwin Encarnación with two outs, prompting manager A.J. Hinch to bring in Ryan Pressly. Pressly, however, served up a single to left field to Brett Gardner, putting runners on first and second with two outs. Hinch again came out to the mound, this time bringing Josh James to face power-hitting catcher Gary Sánchez.
James and Sánchez had an epic battle. Sánchez fell behind 0-2 on a couple of foul balls, proceeded to foul off five of the next six pitches. On the ninth pitch of the at-bat, Sánchez appeared to swing and miss at an 87 MPH slider in the dirt for strike three and the final out of the inning. However, Blaser ruled that Sánchez tipped the ball, extending the at-bat. Replays showed clearly that Sánchez did not make contact at all with the pitch. James then threw a 99 MPH fastball several inches off the plate outside that Blaser called for strike three. Sánchez, who shouldn’t have seen a 10th pitch, was upset at what appeared to be a make-up call.
The rest, as they say, is history. One pitch later, the Astros evened up the ALCS at one game apiece. Obviously, Blaser’s mistakes in a way cancel each other out, and neither of them caused Happ to throw a poorly located fastball to Correa. It is postseason baseball, however, and umpires are as much under the microscope as the players and managers. Those were two particularly atrocious judgments by Blaser.