The Indians and Twins have the honor of playing a two-game series in Puerto Rico at Hiram Bithorn Stadium on Tuesday and Wednesday. Indians shortstop Francisco Lindor, born in Puerto Rico, sure didn’t miss his opportunity to get the crowd jumping.
The stands were buzzing with excitement the first two times Lindor came to the plate, which ended in a fly out and a strikeout. The third time, however, was the charm, as Lindor yanked a 3-2 Odorizzi curve over the fence in right field for a two-run home run, breaking a scoreless tie. Listen to the crowd:
Such a cool moment and exactly why baseball is trying to expand the sport internationally.
Jose Ramirez and Michael Brantley added solo homers to begin the sixth inning to bump the Indians’ lead to 4-0 and chase Odorizzi from the game.
The Tampa Bay Rays were reported this week to be “open for business” as far as trades go. Normally that means nothing happens until late June or something. The Rays are getting right down to it, though, as they’ve just traded closer Alex Colome and outfielder Denard Span to the Seattle Mariners.
The Mariners, who have played some outstanding ball lately thanks to some outstanding starting pitching, and are looking to bolster other areas as they make a push in the AL West, will likely slot Colome into a setup role in front of closer Edwin Diaz. Span will take over center field, allowing Dee Gordon to, eventually anyway, once he recovers from a fractured toe, cover for the suspended Robinson Cano at second base. If the M’s make the playoffs he’d likely do so in the postseason too, given that Cano will be ineligible for any October play due to his suspension.
Colome has saved 11 games for the Rays, with a 4.15 ERA and a K/BB ratio of 23/8 in 21.2 innings.Span is hitting .238/.364/.385 with four homers and six stolen bases on the season.
Two players are going back to the Rays: righties Andrew Moore and Tommy Romero. Moore was the Mariners’ second round pick in 2015 and made his big league debut last season, pitching 59 innings in 2018 but back in the minors so far in 2018. Romero was a 15th rounder for Seattle in 2017 and is currently plying his trade in A-ball.
The Rays, as expected, are using the 2018 season to acquire prospects. The Mariners, who are unexpectedly strong in the early going, are trying to go for it even harder. Quite a big trade for late May.