Wednesday gifts us with a packed 15-game MLB slate, including loads of day baseball and a doubleheader between the Rangers and Indians. In addition, we’ve got contests with playoff implications in L.A., Queens (yes, Queens), Wrigley, Tropicana Field, Minnesota, San Fran, Pittsburgh, Boston, and Arizona. So settle in as we give you the blow-by-blow.
All that and more. Let’s get to it.
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Baseball schedule/scores for Wednesday, August 7
- FINAL – Mets 7, Marlins 2 (box score)
- FINAL – Braves 11, Twins 7 (box score)
- FINAL – White Sox 8, Tigers 1 (box score)
- FINAL – Blue Jays 4, Rays 3 (box score)
- FINAL – Indians 2, Rangers 0, Game 1 (box score)
- FINAL – Rockies at Astros (GameTracker)
- FINAL – Cubs 10, Athletics 1 (box score)
- FINAL – Dodgers 2, Cardinals 1 (box score)
- FINAL – Nationals 4, Giants 1 (box score)
- FINAL – Indians 5, Rangers 1, Game 2 (box score)
- Padres at Mariners (GameTracker)
- Brewers at Pirates (GameTracker)
- Yankees at Orioles (GameTracker)
- Royals at Red Sox (GameTracker)
- Phillies at Diamondbacks, 9:40 p.m. ET (GameTracker)
Alonso’s slump is over
At some point, Mets rookie first baseman Pete Alonso was bound to hit a rough stretch. That happened coming out of the All-Star break, as he had a second-half slash line of .156/.313/.338 through Aug. 5. Over the last handful of games, though, Alonso has looked more like his first-half self, and that continued to be the case on Wednesday in the series finale against the Marlins:
Yep, three straight games with a homer for Petaters. He’s now got 37 home runs for the season, which puts him behind just Christian Yelich and Mike Trout for the MLB lead. That’s one whale of a rookie season. More to the point, Alonso is getting back to peak form as the Mets have surged back into playoff contention and as a tough stretch of schedule looms.
Speaking of Mets power, Michael Conforto homered twice in this one, which gives him 25 for the year and seven in his last 11 games. More generally, the Mets are indeed on a rare roll:
They’ve also gone 19-6 in the second half thus far.
Albies (somewhat) quietly having nice year
Is the Braves’ 22-year-old second baseman getting a bit overlooked this season? With names like Freddie Freeman, Ronald Acuña, and Josh Donaldson on the roster, yeah, maybe that’s the case. Anyhow, peep Ozzie Albies‘ day at the office on Wednesday:
The first of those two home runs was the longest of Albies’ career to date:
All of that gives Albies a slash line of .296/.351/.496 with 17 home runs and 29 doubles. That’s excellent production for a slick-fielding second baseman who also adds significant value with his baserunning. Like his mate Acuña, Albies is a player who does it all and figures to continue doing it all for years to come. In related matters, the Braves have a bright present and future.
Happ slam propels Cubs to blowout
The Cubs paid the A’s back on Wednesday, answering Tuesday night’s blowout loss with a blowout win. The early blow was a grand slam from Ian Happ.
Happ also hit a go-ahead home run in Monday’s win. This was only Happ’s 12th game with the Cubs after surprisingly spending most of the season in Triple-A. He got off to a slow start, but is really locked in right now. He went 2 for 4 Wednesday and both of his outs were lineouts right at defenders. He’s hitting .320/.452/.600 so far and gives the Cubs offense another power hitter with a watchful eye at the plate.
The Cubs closed their home stand 5-1. They are now 41-19 in the Friendly Confines of Wrigley Field, but just 21-33 on the road. They need to flip that road record a bit if they want to put real distance between themselves and the Cardinals and Brewers in the NL Central. They now head out for a 10-game road trip with a 3 1/2-game lead over both teams (pending the Brewers’ Wednesday night result).
Dodgers sweep Cardinals with walkoff
The Cardinals left home in first place and now they trail the Cubs by 3 1/2 games. They’ve dropped five straight. Wednesday was a gut punch, too, as the Cardinals got an absolute gem from Jack Flaherty. He struck out 10 in seven scoreless innings. The offense only mustered one run, though (a solo shot from Marcell Ozuna) and it came back to bite them. Andrew Miller hit Corey Seager with a pitch with one out in the ninth and then Carlos Martinez gave up a pair of singles (with a strikeout in between). Russell Martin came through with the walkoff:
The good news for the Cardinals: They come home to face the hapless Pirates.
Rookie Bichette makes a bit of Jays franchise history
Let’s watch Blue Jays rookie shortstop Bo Bichette notch another two-bagger:
Yep, like the tweet says Bichette has doubled in eight straight games, and at the moment he’s got 11 extra-base hits in 10 career games. That comes to a slash line of .409/.447/.795 since his July 29 call-up.
Obviously, he’s not going to keep this up, but Bichette, a former second-rounder who’s now 21, was at various points in the minors considered a top-10 overall prospect. Throw in the baseball bloodlines and the full shed of tools, and he’s got an exceptionally bright future in Toronto.
Speaking of Toronto, it’s Bichette, Lourdes Gurriel, and the surging Vladimir Guerrero Jr. who are keeping enthusiasm afloat right now. The team isn’t good and stars have been sloughed off left and right in recent seasons, but the young core is looking like one of the most impressive in the game.
Nationals sweep Giants
With Wednesday’s win, the Nats got the sweep and appear to have righted the ship after a down stretch. They hold the top NL wild card spot. On the opposite end, the Giants have lost six of their last seven and their always-small chances of making the playoffs dwindle.
Of note on the Nats’ end: Joe Ross threw six scoreless innings, following an outing where he worked 5 1/3 scoreless. The Nationals still have a question mark when it comes to who would be the fourth starter in a playoff series — should they get there — and Ross might be moving into a competition with Anibal Sanchez for that slot. That’s a decision far down the road, though.
Highlight of the day: Twins turn another triple play
Not so long ago (16 games, in fact), the Twins victimized the Yankees . On Wednesday, the Twins registered their second triple play of the 2019 season, and again it was a division leader — the Braves — that suffered their defensive wrath. But wait, that’s not all: Martin Perez was on the mound for both of those triplet killings. Witness:
Just like the first one, this one was a 5-4-3, and of course it always helps to have the catcher running out of the box in such situations (Tyler Flowers in this instance). According to SABR, the record for triple plays in a season by a single team is three, which is shared by seven different squads.
Stat of the Day: Gurriel’s 8 RBI
Astros first baseman Yuli Gurriel tied a franchise record with eight RBI. He hit a three-run homer in the first, a sac fly in the third, a bases-loaded double in the fourth and a run-scoring fielder’s choice in the sixth. This is the third eight-RBI game this season. Brandon Crawford and Josh Phegley had the first two.
- The Cubs have reportedly signed C Jonathan Lucroy after he cleared waivers and was released by the Angels. .
- According to Robert Murray of The Athletic, the Diamondbacks will designated RHP Greg Holland for assignment.
- The Marlins have placed INF Miguel Rojas on the 10-day IL with a right hamstring injury.
- The Angels have acquired RHP Drew Hutchison from the Twins in a minor-league trade.
- The Blue Jays have claimed RHP Zack Godley off waivers from the Diamondbacks.
- The Tigers have designated RHP Trevor Rosenthal for assignment.