Baseball fans were subjected to 17 innings of ball between the Diamondbacks and the Brewers on Sunday afternoon. D-Backs outfielder Mark Trumbo hit a solo home run to tie the game up at 6-6 in the top of the eighth inning and the score would hold there until Brewers catcher Martin Maldonado hit a walk-off solo home run in the 17th inning off of Vidal Nuno, in his sixth inning of relief work.
Maldonado was certainly an unlikely hero, as he entered the game batting .157/.222/.209 in 127 plate appearances. The homer is his third of the season along with 10 RBI.
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Robert Murray and MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reported earlier, respectively, that the Phillies signed pitcher Francisco Liriano and infielder Neil Walker to minor league contracts. If he makes the major league roster, Liriano will earn a salary of $1.5 million with an additional $1.25 million available through performance incentives. Walker’s contract information is not yet known.
Liriano, 36, struggled from 2016-18 but enjoyed a productive year out of the bullpen for the Pirates this past season. He posted a 3.47 ERA with 63 strikeouts and 35 walks over 70 innings. The lefty was quite effective against same-handed batters, limiting fellow lefties to a .659 OPS. That would figure to be a key component if Liriano makes the Phillies’ Opening Day roster.
Walker, 34, hit .261/.344/.395 with eight home runs and 38 RBI over 381 plate appearances with the Marlins last year. The veteran is versastile, having played first, second, and third base along with both corner outfield spots in recent seasons. Despite Walker’s versatility, it is tough to see room on the Phillies’ roster for him, barring injuries to other players. It never hurts to have depth.