There’s some drama about Brett Lawrie apologizing to Alcides Escobar

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On Friday night, Athletics third baseman Brett Lawrie led with his spikes on a slide into second base in an attempt to break up a 5-6-3 double play, resulting in an injury for Royals shortstop Alcides Escobar. The injury was described as a mid-left knee strain. Escobar remains out of the Royals’ lineup for Saturday’s game.

The Royals were quite unhappy with Lawrie’s slide and the benches cleared. Lawrie claimed to have apologized via text message to Escobar after the game, but Escobar says he never got an apology. Take it away, Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle:

Apology-gate! In all seriousness, as Slusser suggests, it was probably a simple matter of Lawrie getting an old number.

Gerrit Cole second-fastest to 200 strikeouts in a season

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Astros starter Gerrit Cole dominated the Athletics on Monday night, limiting them to one run on two hits and a walk while striking out 11. It marked his 12th start out of 22 this season with double-digit strikeouts, giving him 205 total on the season.

It is no surprise, then, to hear that Cole is the second-fastest in baseball history to reach 200 strikeouts in a season, per MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart. Cole got there in 133 1/3 innings. The only pitcher faster than Cole was Randy Johnson, who reached 200 K’s in 130 2/3 innings back in 2001 with the Diamondbacks.

Along with the 205 strikeouts, Cole holds an 11-5 record with a 3.03 ERA across 136 2/3 innings. Among qualified starters in the American League, only Charlie Morton (2.61), Mike Minor (2.86), José Berríos (2.96), and teammate Justin Verlander (2.99) have a better ERA than Cole, who has twice finished in the top-five in Cy Young Award voting.