As I mentioned in the comments earlier, Andrelton Simmons slid into third base hard last night, injuring Yunel Escobar. You can watch the play here. Short version: Simmons was dead to rights, likely knew it, slid late, apparently intending to try to dislodge the ball from Escobar’s glove with his foot. He, in fact, took his whole glove off and cut Escobar’s hand, forcing him out of the game.
The Nationals are not pleased about it:
Said Bryce Harper: “Andrelton plays with a lot of energy, but that was a B.S. play. That slide was definitely uncalled for.”
Said Ian Desmond: “He really didn’t slide at all. It was a pretty ugly slide. You’ve got to be way smarter than that. There’s a right way to play the game, and that’s not the right way.”
Hard to blame them. I love Simmons — he’s probably my favorite current Brave — but it’s hard to conclude that he was trying to do anything other than dislodge the ball there. That doesn’t always lead to injury and some people laud that kind of thing as gritty or whatever, but the fact is is that when you use your cleats as a weapon, there’s a good chance you’re gonna hurt someone. We outlawed home plate collisions for the same reason.
And no, I don’t care if Ty Cobb did it. Ty Cobb was a jackass.
2019 has been one long nightmare for the Pirates. They’re in last place in the NL Central, have had multiple clubhouse fights, and can’t stop getting into bench-clearing incidents. The embarrassment continued on Sunday as the club lost 16-6 to the Cubs, suffering a three-game series sweep in Chicago.
One of those 16 runs the Pirates allowed was particularly noteworthy. In the bottom of the third inning, with the game tied at 5-5, the Cubs had runners on first and second with two outs. Tony Kemp hit a triple to right field, allowing both Ben Zobrist and Jason Heyward to score to make it 7-5. The Pirates thought one of the Cubs’ base runners didn’t touch third base on their way home. Reliever Michael Feliz attempted to make an appeal throw to third base, but it was way too high for Erik González to catch, so Kemp scored easily on the error.
The Pirates lost Friday’s game to the Cubs 17-8 and Saturday’s game 14-1. They were outscored 47-15 in the three-game series. According to Baseball Reference, since 1908, the Pirates never allowed 14+ runs in three consecutive games and only did it two games in a row twice before this series, in 1949 and in 1950. The Cubs scored 14+ in three consecutive games just one other time, in 1930.