Xander Bogaerts polished off the Red Sox’ 10-inning, 6-2 victory over the Blue Jays in dazzling fashion on Saturday, crushing a Chris Rowley fastball to dead center field for a walk-off grand slam:
It wasn’t exactly Bogaerts’ first slam of the year — he checked that box twice in April alone — but it marked the club’s first walk-off grand slam since Rico Brogna did it against the Devil Rays in August 2000. In fact, this has been a remarkably grand slam-filled season for the Red Sox so far; according to ESPN Stats & Info, they’ve racked up nine slams in the first four months of the season, just two shy of the all-time record they established in 2005.
The walk-off homer capped a wild game for the Red Sox, one in which they took an early lead with J.D. Martinez‘s league-leading 29th home run, lost Eduardo Rodriguez to a right ankle sprain, and sent the game to extras with a last-minute RBI double from Jackie Bradley in the ninth. They’ve now taken the lead in the four-game series, 2-1, and will go for the win on Sunday afternoon when southpaw Brian Johnson takes on Blue Jays’ right-hander Marcus Stroman at 1:05 PM EDT.
Here’s a rumor from yesterday afternoon that sort of fell through the cracks, but it’s fun enough to think about for a few moments: Ken Rosenthal reports that the Dodgers and Reds have had “multiple” trade discussions involving Yasiel Puig.
Puig is a potential trade candidate, either (a) because he’s “disgruntled,” according to Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times last week; or (b) because the Dodgers want to clear salary and roster spots in order to sign a big-name player, according to Rosenthal here. Many people suspect that the Dodgers are going to make a run at Bryce Harper, for example, and if that’s the case they’d no doubt want to open up right field for him.
It seems questionable that any Reds-Dodgers talks would get a ton of traction, especially given that Rosenthal reports that there’s a possibility of the Dodgers taking on Reds pitcher Homer Bailey and the $28 million he’s still owed in order to get some talent back from the Reds in a trade. That would seem to defeat the purpose of unloading Puig’s salary, but this is the sort of things we all talk about now given that the league has, more or less, a defacto salary cap imposed by the Competitive Balance Tax.