Good hitting by Astros outfielder Michael Brantley and bad Orioles defense led to a significant lead change in the top of the ninth inning on Sunday afternoon in Baltimore. The Astros trailed 5-4, but had runners on first and second with no outs as Brantley faced Mychal Givens. With a 1-2 count, Brantley laced an inside fastball down the right field line. Right fielder Anthony Santander had trouble getting the ball out of the corner, then made a weak throw to the cutoff man. Not only did two runs score, Brantley also scored on what was ultimately ruled a triple and a throwing error on Santander.
The Orioles were able to fight back in the bottom of the ninth against closer Roberto Osuna, however. Jace Peterson led off with a double and Chance Cisco was hit by a pitch to put runners on the corners with one out. Chris Davis brought home a run with a sacrifice fly, then Rio Ruiz hit a walk-off two-run home run. Despite the awful defensive sequence at the top of the inning, the O’s still went home winners.
Houston Astros ace Justin Verlander will undergo Tommy John surgery and miss the rest of the season.
The reigning AL Cy Young Award winner announced the news Saturday on his Instagram account in a 1½-minute video.
“In my simulated game a couple days ago, I felt something in my elbow, and after looking at my MRI and conversing with some of the best doctors in the world, we’ve determined that Tommy John surgery is my best option,” Verlander said.
He threw to hitters on Wednesday for the first time since he was injured in the team’s opener on July 24. He threw 50 pitches in the bullpen before throwing about 25 pitches to hitters in two simulated innings.
“I tried as hard as I could to come back and play this season,” Verlander said. “Unfortunately, my body just didn’t cooperate.”
Verlander has been on the injured list with a right forearm strain. He went 21-6 with a 2.58 ERA in 2019.
“Obviously, this is not good news,” Verlander said. “However, I’m going to handle this the only way I know how. I’m optimistic. I’m going to put my head down, work hard, attack this rehab and hopefully, come out the other side better for it.
“I truly believe everything that everything happens for a reason, and although 2020 has sucked, hopefully, when this rehab process is all said and done, this will allow me to charge through the end of my career and be healthy as long as I want and pitch as long as I want and accomplish some of the goals that I want in my career.”
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