UPDATE: Jose Ramirez led off the seventh for Cleveland, took Snell to a 3-0 count, Snell evened it up at 3-2 and then . . . Jose Ramirez broke it up with a homer to left field. It was Ramirez’s first homer since August 17. With it he ended that home run drought, the no-hitter and the shutout.
As you were.
2:46 PM: Tampa Bay Rays starter Blake Snell is having a fantastic season. One that has him in the hunt for the Cy Young Award. He’s bolstering that case so far today down in St. Petersburg, where he has a no-hitter going through six innings against the Cleveland Indians. The Rays are up 3-0.
Snell has walked two batters so the perfecto is out of reach, but he’s struck out eight. He’s currently at 82 pitches, so even if he keeps the Indians hitless, there’s a chance he’ll run out of gas before he can complete this bad boy, but we’ll see. His season high pitch total is 114, which he’s reached twice.
The last time anyone no-hit the Indians was when Ervin Santana of the Angels did it back in 2011.
Coming into today’s game, Snell was 18-5 with a 2.06 ERA in 27 starts.
On Sunday, Blue Jays closer Ken Giles spoke to Rosie DiManno of the Toronto Star. Giles said, “I’m actually enjoying the game more than I did for my entire tenure in Houston.” Giles won a World Series with the Astros last year, but talked about communication issues with the Astros and compared them unfavorably to the Blue Jays. Giles described the communication as having been “lost” and credited the Jays for staying patient with him.
Astros manager A.J. Hinch responded to Giles’ comments on Monday. Per Sportsnet’s Shi Davidi, Hinch said:
I think he’s wrong and I’m disappointed that he would go down that path given how much work and time and energy and communication that our front office, our coaching staff, me, we all went through this with him. And I understand, there was some disappointment in his tenure as an Astro because of the turbulent way things went about. We gave him every opportunity, we communicated with him effectively, we have an incredible culture where every single player will tell you it’s one of the best cultures they’ve had, one of the best communication envrionments they’ve had. They all know their roles. They all know their situations. To have one person out of all the guys in our clubhouse come out and claim otherwise is flat wrong.
While Giles certainly could be embellishing or deliberately misconstruing his time there, Hinch’s rebuttal doesn’t actually disqualify anything Giles said. Giles certainly could have had a negative experience in Houston even if everyone else was enjoying the “incredible culture” and “one of the best communication environments.”
Given how the Astros — including Hinch — responded to criticism about their acquiring an accused domestic abuser, they’re not in the best position to boast about an “incredible culture” anyway.
At any rate, this is a he-said, he-said situation. If anything more comes of it, it will be Giles further torching a bridge.