Video: Shin-Soo Choo extends on-base streak to 45 games

Texas Rangers v Detroit Tigers
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Rangers designated hitter Shin-Soo Choo is chasing franchise history. During Friday’s game against the Tigers, Choo was the first to strike for either side after postmarking a Jordan Zimmerman fastball to center field for a leadoff home run in the first inning.

The 436-footer was Choo’s 17th of the year, and more importantly, helped extend his current on-base streak to 45 games. The franchise record sits at 46 straight games and is currently held by former Rangers infielder, Julio Franco, who completed the feat back in 1993. No player — on the Rangers or any other major league team — has matched Choo’s record so far this season.

Following that first inning blast, the Rangers’ bats stayed fairly quiet against Zimmerman. Tigers catcher James McCann snatched the lead in the fifth with a two-run shot off of Bartolo Colon, compromising Colon’s ability to make some history of his own. He needs just one more win to overtake Dennis Martinez as the winningest Latin American pitcher in MLB history.

The Rangers currently trail the Tigers 2-1 in the eighth.

Royals fire manager Mike Matheny after 65-97 end to season

Minnesota Twis v Kansas City Royals
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Manager Mike Matheny and pitching coach Cal Eldred were fired by the Kansas Cty Royals on Wednesday night, shortly after the struggling franchise finished the season 65-97 with a listless 9-2 loss to the Cleveland Guardians.

The Royals had exercised their option on Matheny’s contract for 2023 during spring training, when the club hoped it was turning the corner from also-ran to contender again. But plagued by poor pitching, struggles from young position players and failed experiments with veterans, the Royals were largely out of playoff contention by the middle of summer.

The disappointing product led owner John Sherman last month to fire longtime front office executive Dayton Moore, the architect of back-to-back American League champions and the 2015 World Series title team. Moore was replaced by one of his longtime understudies, J.J. Picollo, who made the decision to fire Matheny hours after the season ended.

Matheny became the fifth big league manager to be fired this year.

Philadelphia’s Joe Girardi was replaced on June 3 by Rob Thomson, who engineered a miraculous turnaround to get the Phillies into the playoffs as a wild-card team. The Angels replaced Joe Maddon with Phil Nevin four days later, Toronto’s Charlie Montoyo was succeeded by John Schneider on July 13 and the Rangers’ Chris Woodward by Tony Beasley on Aug. 15.

In addition, Miami’s Don Mattingly said late last month that he will not return next season.