MLB Wednesday scores, highlights, news, updates: Votto falls short of on-base record
Plus the Angels stay clutch, the Mets make things interesting at third base and more from Wednesday
Wednesday afforded the baseball enthusiast a full schedule of MLB action, including plenty of day games. So let's jump right in ...
- Angels 3, Nationals 2 (box score)
- Marlins 8, Giants 1 (box score)
- Brewers 7, Pirates 6 (box score)
- Royals 7, Athletics 6 (box score)
- Mariners 7, Orioles 6 (box score)
- Padres 3, Phillies 0 (box score)
- Blue Jays 3, Rays 2 (box score)
- Yankees 5, Mets 3 (box score)
- Red Sox 5, Cardinals 4 (box score)
- Rangers 12, Tigers 6 (box score)
- Cubs 7, Reds 6 (box score)
- Indians at Twins postponed (doubleheader on Thursday)
- Astros 9, Diamondbacks 5 (box score)
- Rockies 17, Braves 2 (box score)
- Dodgers 5, White Sox 4 (box score)
Votto's streak ends short of record
Joey Votto did something Wednesday night he hadn't done since July 25: he failed to reach base multiple times. Votto went 1 for 4 with a single in Wednesday's walk-off loss to the Cubs. Had the game gone to extra innings, he would've led off the 10th.
Votto's streak of reaching base multiple times spanned 20 games and was the second longest in history. It was one short of tying the all-time record:
During the 20-game multiple times on-base streak, Votto hit a ridiculous .424/.596/.712 with 26 walks and nine strikeouts. His batting line sits at .315/.447/.597 for the season. Man, can this guy hit, or what?
Darvish's record strikeout streak ends
Yu Darvish made his first start at Dodger Stadium since being traded to the Dodgers on Wednesday night, and he was rudely greeted with a leadoff home run by Leury Garcia. First pitch of the game, too. Here's the video:
Darvish settled down and wound up allowing three runs on eight hits and one walk in six innings. He struck out only two, which is noteworthy because his record streak came to an end:
The longest active streak now belongs to Jake Arrieta. He has struck out at least three batters in each of his past 107 appearances. Chris Archer (96 games), Madison Bumgarner (80 games), and Corey Kluber (70 games) are the only other pitchers with an active streak longer than 50 games.
Judge hits monster homer, sets strikeout record
Bittersweet day for Aaron Judge, this was. First came the sweet: He launched an absolute moonshoot against the Mets in the third game of the Subway Series. The ball landed in the third deck at Citi Field.
To the action footage:
I've seen a handful of players hit the ball up there in batting practice, mostly Yoenis Cespedes and Giancarlo Stanton, but I can't remember seeing one hit up there during a game. Judge connected, put his head down, and ran around the bases. The next home run I see him admire will be the first.
That was the sweet part. The bitter: he struck out for the 33rd consecutive game, setting a new record for position players. The strikeout came in his last at-bat, too, so he was close to snapping the streak.
Stoneman and Blue were, of course, pitchers.
Even with all those strikeouts, Judge is still hitting .291/.420/.614 with an AL-leading 37 home runs. The Yankees will live with Judge striking out every game the rest of the season if he keeps up that pace.
Myers steals his way around the bases
Wil Myers had himself quite a trip around the bases on Wednesday afternoon. In the fourth inning, he stroked an RBI single to left to open the scoring, then stole second, third, and home. Check it out:
Aside from hitting a home run, that's pretty much the only way a hitter can create a run all by himself. Naturally, the steal of home was a botched play:
The last player to steal his way around the bases was Dee Gordon back in 2011, back when he was with the Dodgers.
The Angels keep getting clutch hits
The Angels nipped the Nationals on Wednesday and in doing so remained in possession of the second AL wild-card spot. When you win a game by a score of 3-2 in the modern era, it's about pitching and defense to a large extent. However, Kole Calhoun's clutch two-run homer with two outs in the sixth also moved the needle in a big way ...
So, yes, clutch blast, as mentioned. That's in keeping with the general theme of things with the Angels this year. They're above .500 and in playoff position in part because they're now 22-15 in one-run games. That's got something to do with their timely hitting. Now Angel better embodies that than Albert Pujols in 2017 ...
No, clutch hitting isn't really a sustainable skill -- good hitters tend to be good hitters in all situations, and players who can't handle pressure situations get weeded out long before they reach the majors. Clutch hitting, however, is a thing that happens, particularly within the confines of a single season. Pujols is certainly doing that, if you consider RISP a stand-in for clutch spots. And the Angels as a whole are doing it.
For instance, they rank last in the AL in overall OPS this season. However, they rank sixth in the AL in "late and close" game situations. Also, in high-leverage spots -- i.e., clutch situations -- Angels hitters have an OPS of .749. In low-leverage situations -- i.e., situations of relative unimportance -- their team OPS falls to .703. That's a big difference, even if it's just random noise driving it.
Oh, and for those who are curious, yes, Mike Trout's indeed gotten in on the act ...
The thing about clutch performance is that it can vaporize in an instant. The Angels, though, are hoping that it sticks around long enough to carry them to the playoffs.
Brewers make big comeback against Pirates
Quite a roller coaster at Miller Park on Wednesday afternoon. The Pirates jumped out an early 4-0 lead, then the Brewers tied it. The Pirates took a 5-4 lead, then the Brewers tied it. The Pirates took a 6-5 lead, then the Brewers won it.
Manny Pina's go-ahead two-run home run with two outs in the bottom of the eighth gave Milwaukee their first (and only) lead of the game. Here's video of Pina's clutch dinger:
Pina, a 30-year-old journeyman, is now hitting .290/.333/.457 with nine home runs this season. What a nice little surprise he has been for the Brew Crew. Also of note: Keon Broxton swatted two home runs Wednesday in a comeback victory.
The victory kept the Brewers 1½ games behind the NL Central-leading Cubs.
Mets play a catcher at third
A few hours before Wednesday night's game against the Yankees, the Mets got some pretty bad news. Infielders Wilmer Flores and Jose Reyes had to be scratched from the starting lineup, forcing the club to play catcher Travis d'Arnaud at third base.
d'Arnaud has never played a position other than catcher in the big leagues, and his only professional experience at a different position is two Triple-A games at first base back in 2012. The Mets had no other options, however.
So, to help limit the damage, the Mets had d'Arnaud and Asdrubal Cabrera essentially share second and third bases. Cabrera would play second against left-handed batters and third against right-handed batters, so if they pulled the ball with authority, they would be hitting it at an experienced infielder. Pretty good idea, I would say.
- Matt Snyder's latest Power Rankings is hot off the presses. .
- Padres SP Jered Weaver has announced his retirement.
- The National League this season .
- The Nationals have placed OF Brian Goodwin on the DL with left groin strain. To take his place on the active roster, they've selected OF Alejandro De Aza from Triple-A.
- USA Today's Bob Nightengale reports that the White Sox recently signed GM Rick Hahn and team vice-president Ken Williams to long-term contract extensions.
- The Athletics have acquired minor-league LHP Sam Moll from the Rockies in exchange for cash considerations or a player to be named later.
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