Carlos Gonzalez’ ninth inning homer stuns the Dodgers

21 Comments

Down 4-2 with two on and two outs in the ninth, Carlos Gonzalez stepped up to the plate and launched a low fastball from Yimi Garcia deep into the right field pavilion:

That ended up being the ballgame.

The Dodgers’ bullpen has been better than it should be. In spring training they lost Kenley Jansen and Brandon League. Joel Peralta went down after the season started. Yet, despite all of the new and inexperienced faces, they’ve held their own. They have the second best bullpen ERA, second best batting average against and lead the league in bullpen strikeouts.

But all of the new faces may be messing with Don Mattingly and causing him to avoid some better choices. Like, say, putting in one of his many available lefties to face the left-handed Carlos Gonzalez last night rather than have a righty like Garcia face him.

As Mark Saxon of ESPN LA reported last night, Mattingly said after the game that the ninth is “Yimi’s inning.” Well, no. It’s Kenley Jansen’s inning maybe, and with him gone you should probably play more matchups rather than revert to such conventions as relievers owning an inning because of who they are.

Red Sox place Chris Sale on 10-day injured list

Chris Sale
Getty Images
1 Comment

Red Sox left-hander Chris Sale has been placed on the 10-day injured list with left elbow inflammation, the club revealed Saturday. The assignment is retroactive to August 14. In a corresponding roster move, right-handed reliever Ryan Brasier was recalled from Triple-A Pawtucket.

It’s an alarming development for the 30-year-old ace, who has been remarkably injury-free after dealing with a lingering case of shoulder inflammation last summer. While he hasn’t replicated the career-high results he delivered over the last two seasons, he still leads Red Sox pitchers with 3.6 fWAR and will head to the IL with a 6-11 record in 25 starts, a 4.40 ERA, 2.3 BB/9, and league-best 13.3 SO/9 through 147 1/3 innings. A timetable has not been given for his return, nor has the severity of his injury been disclosed. Per Red Sox president Dave Dombrowski, Sale has been experiencing pain in his elbow since Wednesday and will undergo further evaluation in the days to come.

Brasier, 31, was optioned to Triple-A Pawtucket in mid-July after pitching to mixed results in the majors. He currently holds a 4.46 ERA, 2.7 BB/9, and 8.0 SO/9 with the Red Sox, though his results in Triple-A — one run, one walk, and 13 strikeouts over 9 1/3 innings — suggest that he might be capable of even sharper results when he rejoins the big league club.