Major League Baseball
MLB News Wire
  • MLB notebook: Scherzer set to return Thursday
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 23, 2019

    Washington Nationals ace right-hander Max Scherzer is set to return from the 10-day injured list to start Thursday against the visiting Colorado Rockies, manager Dave Martinez told reporters Tuesday.

    • Scherzer (9-5, 2.30 ERA) experienced soreness in his middle back after he last pitched July 6 against the Kansas City Royals. He was diagnosed with inflammation in the bursa under his right shoulder and skipped the All-Star Game before going on the IL on July 13.

      The three-time Cy Young winner came out of Monday's bullpen session feeling fine. Scherzer, who is 7-0 with a 0.84 ERA over his past nine starts, said according to MLB.com: "Everything feels good. Ball is coming out of my hand exactly the way it should feel like. I'm at 100 percent."

      --The Boston Red Sox activated first baseman Mitch Moreland from the 10-day injured list and sent down infielder Marco Hernandez to Triple-A Pawtucket before their game against the Tampa Bay Rays in St. Petersburg, Fla.

      Moreland, 33, had played in just one game since May 25. He returned from a stint on the IL caused by a lower back strain on June 7, when he had two at-bats and sustained a right quad strain.

      --Philadelphia Phillies right-hander Tommy Hunter underwent season-ending surgery on the flexor tendon in his pitching forearm, manager Gabe Kapler told reporters.

      The surgery was performed by noted orthopedist James Andrews, who found no damage to Hunter's ulnar collateral ligament. Hunter has spent two stints on the injured list this season, initially injuring the flexor tendon in late March.

      Hunter, 33, was limited to five appearances this season due to the arm issues.

      --Seattle Mariners second baseman Dee Gordon was placed on the 10-day injured list, one day after sustaining a left quadriceps strain. Infielder Tim Lopes was recalled from Triple-A Tacoma to fill the opening.

      Gordon, 31, left Seattle's Monday victory over the Texas Rangers after the second inning. He is batting .280 with 16 stolen bases.

      Gordon, a two-time All-Star and former National League batting champion, has been mentioned in recent trade rumors. He is a .288 career hitter in nine seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers (2011-14), Miami Marlins (2015-17) and Mariners (2018-19).

      --The Baltimore Orioles activated right-hander Dylan Bundy to start their game against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Baltimore optioned right-hander Branden Kline to Triple-A Norfolk to open up the roster spot.

      Bundy was on the 10-day injured list due to right knee tendinitis. He was 4-11 with a 5.28 ERA in 18 starts this season before getting hurt.

      --The St. Louis Cardinals activated right-hander Mike Mayers from the 60-day injured list and designated left-hander Chasen Shreve for assignment.

      St. Louis also announced that third baseman Matt Carpenter (foot) was set to start a rehab stint with Triple-A Memphis on Tuesday night. Carpenter, 33, sustained his injury on July 15 when he fouled a pitch off his right foot. He is batting .215 with 10 homers and 29 RBIs.

      Mayers (shoulder) last pitched for the Cardinals on April 15. The 27-year-old went 0-1 with a 5.40 ERA in eight appearances prior to the injury.

      --Former major league pitcher Dwight Gooden was arrested in Newark, N.J., on Monday night and charged with driving while intoxicated, according to a press release issued by the Newark Department of Public Safety.

      Gooden, 54, was stopped while driving a 2012 black Chrysler in the wrong direction on a one-way street at approximately 11:10 p.m. ET, according to the police. Gooden was arrested and taken to University Hospital for evaluation.

      It is the second time in six-plus weeks that Gooden, a former star for the New York Mets, was arrested. He also faces cocaine possession charges from an arrest in Holmdel, N.J., on June 7.

      --The Dodgers unveiled plans for a $100 million renovation to Dodger Stadium that includes a new center field plaza, elevators and bridges connecting the outfield pavilions to the main stadium, and a new sound system.

      "People will be able to do a 360-degree walk around the stadium for the first time," team president and chief executive Stan Kasten told the Los Angeles Times. "The original design of the stadium was for fans to drive up to their gate, go to their seats and go home."

      The new plaza outside center field will include food establishments, a beer garden, two sports bars, a children's play area and a venue for live music. The Jackie Robinson statue will be relocated there from the left field reserve plaza, with a new statue of legendary left-hander Sandy Koufax to be unveiled next year.

      --Field Level Media

  • Mariners place 2B Gordon on IR
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 23, 2019

    Seattle Mariners second baseman Dee Gordon was placed on the 10-day injured list Tuesday, one day after suffering a left quadriceps strain.

    • Gordon, 31, left Monday's victory over the Texas Rangers after the second inning. He is batting .280 with 16 stolen bases.

      Gordon, a two-time All-Star and former National League batting champion, has been mentioned in recent trade rumors. He is a .288 career hitter in nine seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers (2011-14), Miami Marlins (2015-17) and Mariners (2018-19).

      Infielder Tim Lopes was recalled from Triple-A Tacoma to fill the opening. Lopes, 25, was batting .302 with 10 homers, 60 RBIs and 24 steals for the Rainiers.

      Right-hander Parker Markel was designated for assignment to open a 40-man roster spot for Lopes. Markel, 28, had a 15.43 ERA in five appearances for Seattle.

      --Field Level Media

  • Nationals' Scherzer set to come off IL on Thursday
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 23, 2019

    Washington Nationals ace right-hander Max Scherzer is set to return from the 10-day injured list to start Thursday against the visiting Colorado Rockies, manager Dave Martinez told reporters Tuesday.

    • Scherzer (9-5, 2.30 ERA) suffered soreness in his middle back after he last pitched July 6 against the Kansas City Royals. He was diagnosed with inflammation in the bursa under his right shoulder and skipped the All-Star Game before going on the IL on July 13.

      The three-time Cy Young winner came out of Monday's bullpen session feeling fine.

      "Everything feels good," he said on MLB.com. "Ball is coming out of my hand exactly the way it should feel like. I'm at 100 percent."

      Scherzer is 7-0 with a 0.84 ERA over his past nine starts.

      --Field Level Media

  • Red Sox activate Moreland from IL
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 23, 2019

    The Boston Red Sox activated first baseman Mitch Moreland from the 10-day injured list and sent down infielder Marco Hernandez to Triple-A Pawtucket before Tuesday's game at the Tampa Bay Rays.

    • Moreland, 33, has played in just one game since May 25. He returned from a stint on the injured list due to a low back strain on June 7, when he had two at-bats and suffered a right quad strain.

      Moreland is hitting .225 with 13 home runs and 34 RBIs in 47 games. He appeared in four rehab games at Pawtucket, making three starts at first base and one as the designated hitter, before his reinstatement to the 25-man roster.

      The Red Sox have lacked a left-handed-hitting first baseman in Moreland's absence, mostly going with rookie Michael Chavis because Moreland's expected platoon partner, right-handed Steve Pearce, has been on the injured list since June 1 because of a back strain.

      Hernandez, 23, is hitting .339 with two home runs in 62 at-bats covering 27 games. He has helped cover second base while Chavis has been shifted to first.

      --Field Level Media

  • Phillies RHP Hunter undergoes season-ending surgery
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 23, 2019

    Philadelphia Phillies right-hander Tommy Hunter underwent season-ending surgery on the flexor tendon in his pitching forearm on Tuesday, manager Gabe Kapler told reporters.

    • The surgery was performed by noted orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews, who found no damage to Hunter's ulnar collateral ligament.

      Hunter has spent two stints on the injured list this season, initially injuring the flexor tendon in late March.

      The 33-year-old Hunter was limited to five appearances this season due to the arm issues. He didn't allow a run in 5 1/3 innings in what will be his final season of a two-year, $18 million deal he signed with the Phillies in December 2017.

      Hunter went 5-4 with a 3.80 ERA in 65 appearances for the Phillies in 2018. He has a career mark of 56-44 with a 4.08 ERA in 448 appearances (75 starts) in 12 seasons with the Texas Rangers, Baltimore Orioles, Chicago Cubs, Cleveland Indians, Tampa Bay Rays and Phillies.

      --Field Level Media

  • Orioles activate RHP Bundy from IL
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 23, 2019

    The Baltimore Orioles activated right-hander Dylan Bundy to start Tuesday night's game against the Arizona Diamondbacks.

    • Bundy was on the 10-day injured list with right knee tendinitis. He is 4-11 with a 5.28 ERA in 18 starts this season.

      The 26-year-old struggled on July 12 in his last start as he allowed seven runs and eight hits in one inning against the Tampa Bay Rays. He has served up six homers and allowed 17 runs in 17 innings over his last four turns.

      Baltimore optioned right-hander Branden Kline to Triple-A Norfolk to open up the roster spot. Kline, 27, is 1-4 with a 6.18 ERA in 21 appearances.

      --Field Level Media

  • Gooden arrested again, latest for drunk driving
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 23, 2019

    Former major league pitcher Dwight Gooden was arrested in Newark, N.J., on Monday night and charged with driving while intoxicated, according to a press release issued by the Newark Department of Public Safety.

    • Gooden, 54, was stopped while driving a 2012 black Chrysler in the wrong direction on a one-way street at approximately 11:10 p.m. ET. Gooden was arrested and taken to University Hospital for evaluation.

      It is the second time in six-plus weeks that Gooden, a former star for the New York Mets, was arrested. He also faces cocaine possession charges from an arrest in Holmdel, N.J., on June 7.

      "I just like to thank everyone for their support in this horrible struggle," Gooden wrote in a text to Newsday.

      "My apologies to everyone I let down or disappointed. I deserve everything that's being written/talked about me . . . I have no excuse for my action so I am going away for a while to try and save my life. I really don't know who I am right now and definitely don't trust myself. This is the worst I've ever been through all my struggles. But I am going to keep fighting no matter how embarrassing, shameful or selfish I am feeling."

      Gooden is due to appear in Newark Municipal Court next Tuesday per the drunk-driving arrest, according to published reports.

      "It's sad to see the continued problems of this former Mets' star but it's an example of the persistent scourge of drugs and alcohol in this country and the stranglehold they have on addicts," Newark Public Safety Director Anthony F. Ambrose said in the press release.

      Gooden is slated to appear in court on the cocaine charges on Sept. 5 in Monmouth County Superior Court in Freehold, N.J. He was charged with third-degree possession of a controlled substance, driving under the influence and possession of drug paraphernalia.

      The former star has long been plagued by drug issues.

      Gooden tested positive for cocaine in 1987 when he was a major star for the Mets. He missed the entire 1995 season after being suspended for another failed drug test.

      In 2006, Gooden spent eight months in prison after showing up under the influence of a controlled substance at a meeting with his probation officer. Four years later, he was arrested for driving under the influence of a controlled substance in New Jersey with his 5-year-old son in the car.

      Gooden went 194-112 with a 3.51 ERA in 16 seasons. He was a four-time All-Star -- all in his first five seasons.

      Gooden won the National League Cy Young Award at age 20 in his second big league season when he went 24-4 with a 1.53 ERA and had eight shutouts for the Mets in 1985.

      He spent 11 seasons with the Mets. After his year-long suspension, he spent time with the New York Yankees, Cleveland Indians, Tampa Bay Devil Rays and Houston Astros.

      --Field Level Media

  • Cardinals activate Mayers, DFA Shreve
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 23, 2019

    The St. Louis Cardinals activated right-hander Mike Mayers from the 60-day injured list on Tuesday and designated left-hander Chasen Shreve for assignment.

    • St. Louis also announced that third baseman Matt Carpenter (foot) will start a rehab stint with Triple-A Memphis on Tuesday night. Carpenter 33, suffered his injury on July 15 when he fouled a pitch off his right foot. He is batting .215 with 10 homers and 29 RBIs.

      Mayers (shoulder) last pitched for the Cardinals on April 15. The 27-year-old went 0-1 with a 5.40 ERA in eight appearances prior to the injury.

      The 29-year-old Shreve was 1-0 with a 9.00 ERA in three games with St. Louis.

      --Field Level Media

  • Dodger Stadium to undergo $100M renovation
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 23, 2019

    The National League's second-oldest ballpark is getting a nine-figure facelift.

    • The Los Angeles Dodgers unveiled plans Tuesday for a $100-million renovation to Dodger Stadium that includes a new center-field plaza, elevators and bridges connecting the outfield pavilions to the main stadium, and a new sound system.

      "People will be able to do a 360-degree walk around the stadium for the first time," team president and chief executive Stan Kasten told the Los Angeles Times. "The original design of the stadium was for fans to drive up to their gate, go to their seats and go home."

      The new plaza outside center field will include food establishments, a beer garden, two sports bars, a children's play area and a venue for live music. The Jackie Robinson statue will be relocated there from the left-field reserve plaza, with a new statue of legendary left-hander Sandy Koufax to be unveiled next year.

      Koufax, 83, won three Cy Young Awards, was the National League MVP in 1963 and led the NL in ERA every year from 1962 to his 1966, after which he retired.

      "We're finally going to have a front door with this entertainment plaza we're building below and beyond the pavilions," Kasten said. "It's going to act like a two-acre tailgating area pre- and postgame."

      The upgrades and improvements are expected to be completed prior to the 2020 season. The 57-year-old facility will host next July's All-Star Game for the first time since 1980.

      "We're just using that game as an opportunity to make the ballpark shine," Kasten told the newspaper. "This just seemed like the perfect time."

      Dodger Stadium opened its doors in 1962. Chicago's Wrigley Field, built in 1914, is the NL's oldest ballpark.

      --Field Level Media

  • MLB roundup: Twins hit five HRs, turn triple play
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 23, 2019

    Mitch Garver hit two of Minnesota's five home runs, and the Twins turned a triple play en route to an 8-6 victory over the New York Yankees on Monday night in Minneapolis.

    • Jorge Polanco, Nelson Cruz and Max Kepler also homered for Minnesota, which increased its major-league-leading total to 187. It was the eighth time this season that the Twins hit five or more home runs in a game, tying the major league record set by the 1977 Boston Red Sox.

      Garver finished 3-for-4 with three runs, and Polanco had two hits and two runs.

      The triple play, the 13th in Twins and history and first since June 1, 2017, against the Angels, occurred in the first inning after Minnesota starter Martin Perez began the frame by walking DJ LeMahieu and Aaron Judge. Edwin Encarnacion hit a hard grounder to third baseman Luis Arraez, who quickly stepped on the bag and threw to second baseman Jonathan Schoop, who then threw a laser to first baseman Miguel Sano to complete the play.

      Cardinals 6, Pirates 5 (10 innings)

      Paul Goldschmidt hit a grand slam in the 10th inning, a blast that bounced into the Allegheny River and held up to give visiting St. Louis a win over Pittsburgh.

      The game had been tied 2-2 since the fourth when Matt Wieters drew a walk from Clay Holmes (1-1) to open the 10th. An out later, Tommy Edman's single moved Wieters to second, and Holmes hit Dexter Fowler to load the bases. Goldschmidt followed with a shot to right-center, his 19th homer, to make it 6-2.

      Pittsburgh drew to within a run in the bottom of the 10th on Josh Bell's RBI double against winner Chasen Shreve (1-0) and Jung Ho Kang's two-run homer off Carlos Martinez, who ultimately picked up his ninth save.

      Reds 6, Brewers 5

      Eugenio Suarez hit his second two-run homer of the game with two outs in the ninth inning off Jeremy Jeffress, and Cincinnati overcame blowing a three-run lead in the eighth inning to win at Milwaukee.

      Suarez's two-run drive off Adrian Houser -- also with two outs -- gave Cincinnati a 4-1 lead in the seventh. Then with the Reds down their last out, Suarez hammered a 1-0 pitch into the left field seats to put the Reds back ahead 6-5. It was Suarez's first career hit in 11 at-bats against Jeffress (3-3), who was pitching for a third straight day.

      Tyler Saladino's grand slam, his second in as many days, off Raisel Iglesias gave the Brewers a temporary 5-4 lead in the bottom of the eighth.

      Astros 11, A's 1

      Gerrit Cole recorded his 12th double-digit strikeout performance this season, and a trio of Cuban-born sluggers provided offensive support as Houston rolled over visiting Oakland in the opener of a three-game series.

      Yordan Alvarez (Las Tunas), Yuli Gurriel (Sancti Spiritus) and Aledmys Diaz (Santa Clara) all belted home runs off A's right-hander Homer Bailey (8-7) as Houston exploded to an 11-run lead by the close of the third inning.

      Bailey surrendered nine runs on eight hits and failed to record an out in the third. Cole fanned 11 and walked one while allowing one run on two hits in seven innings.

      Red Sox 9, Rays 4

      J.D. Martinez, Andrew Benintendi and Sam Travis clouted homers in a seven-run third inning, and Eduardo Rodriguez fired seven innings of two-hit, shutout ball to lead Boston over Tampa Bay in St. Petersburg, Fla.

      The three-homer barrage occurred after Rafael Devers opened the scoring in the third with a two-RBI double. Benintendi finished 3-for-5 and a triple short of the cycle. Martinez drove in four runs with his homer and a double.

      Rodriguez (12-4) gave up only infield singles to Guillermo Heredia and Michael Brosseau, and he didn't allow a Rays player to reach second base. The lefty struck out six and walked four in winning his fourth straight start. Rodriguez is 8-1 in his past 11 starts.

      Indians 7, Blue Jays 3

      Oscar Mercado homered, tripled and drove in two runs, Mike Clevinger struck out seven in seven innings, and visiting Cleveland defeated Toronto.

      Francisco Lindor also had two RBIs for the Indians, who have won eight of nine. Clevinger (4-2) allowed three runs, five hits and two walks to win his third straight decision over four starts.

      Justin Smoak and Billy McKinney homered for the Blue Jays, who have six losses in the past nine games.

      White Sox 9, Marlins 1

      Yoan Moncada smacked a three-run home run, Jose Abreu hit a two-run shot, and Ryan Goins and James McCann added back-to-back solo homers to support a complete-game four-hitter from Ivan Nova and lead host Chicago past Miami.

      Chicago opened a season-high, 10-game homestand with a 10-hit attack that fueled the team's third win in four games. It was more than enough offense for Nova, who delivered his first complete game since April 29, 2017, when he shut out the Marlins as a member of the Pittsburgh Pirates.

      Nova entered the game with sterling career numbers against Miami -- 4-0 with a 0.98 ERA in four starts. After hitting Marlins leadoff man Curtis Granderson to start the game, he maintained the trend, limiting Miami to four hits and one run with zero walks and five strikeouts.

      Rockies-Nationals, ppd.

      The game between visiting Colorado and Washington was postponed to a severe weather forecast, shortly before its scheduled start time. The game will be made up with a day-night doubleheader on Wednesday.

      Giants 5, Cubs 4

      Austin Slater and Joe Panik hit consecutive pitches for two-out, RBI doubles in a three-run eighth inning that rallied host San Francisco to a win over Chicago.

      Pablo Sandoval opened the eighth with a double, and Brandon Crawford set up the difference-making hits by Slater and Panik with an RBI single, helping the Giants win for the ninth time in their last 10 games. The victory pushed the Giants (51-50) over .500 for the first time this season.

      Home runs by Robel Garcia and Kyle Schwarber had helped the Cubs take a 3-0 lead midway through the fourth. Anthony Rizzo's eighth-inning RBI double gave the visitors a 4-2 lead, but the Giants stormed back with four hits against the fifth Chicago pitcher, Pedro Strop (2-4).

      Diamondbacks 6, Orioles 3

      Robbie Ray struck out 10, Eduardo Escobar tripled twice, and Adam Jones had three hits against his former team as Arizona beat Baltimore in Phoenix.

      Ray (9-6) won his fourth consecutive start, allowing three runs on eight hits and a walk in six innings. He fanned three in both the third and fourth innings, helping him strike out double-digit batters for the fourth time this season.

      Jones, who spent the past 11 seasons with the Orioles before signing with Arizona in the offseason, went 3-for-4 with an RBI and a run.

      Mariners 7, Rangers 3

      Austin Nola hit a three-run homer and Marco Gonzales overcame a shaky first two innings as Seattle defeated visiting Texas.

      Kyle Seager also homered as the Mariners won for just the second time in their past 10 games. Rougned Odor hit a solo shot for the Rangers, who took their eighth consecutive loss.

      Gonzales (11-8) pitched seven innings, allowing two runs on seven hits with no walks and four strikeouts. The left-hander retired 17 of the final 18 batters he faced. Roenis Elias got the final out for his 12th save of the season.

      --Field Level Media

  • Hundreds attend memorial for late Angels pitcher Skaggs
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 23, 2019

    Three weeks after Tyler Skaggs was found dead in his hotel room in Texas, hundreds gathered in his native Santa Monica, Calif., on Monday to celebrate the life of the late Los Angeles Angels pitcher.

    • The memorial at St. Monica Church contained numerous photos of Skaggs and his No. 45 displayed in red and white flowers, the Orange County Register reported. Among those in attendance were current and former teammates, members of the extended Angels family and staff, and Skaggs' family and friends.

      "Whatever you called him, he was the exact same guy to everyone here and anyone who was lucky enough to be near him," Angels pitcher Andrew Heaney said of the man known as Ty, Skaggsy and Swaggy by those who knew him best. "He was a genuine and caring person. He was intense about being a great friend and great teammate."

      Skaggs, 27, was found unresponsive in his room at the team hotel in Southland, Texas, on July 1. The Angels were in town to play the Rangers, and that day's game was postponed. No cause of death has been released, though an autopsy was performed and the results are pending.

      In the time since Skaggs' death, the Angels have paid tribute in numerous ways, though none more impactful or memorable than their July 12 combined no-hitter thrown in the Angels' first home game since Skaggs' death. Every player on the Angels wore No. 45 with Skaggs' name on the back during the game, then after the game, players gathered at the mound, each taking off his jersey and laying it on the mound.

      "We all felt like we had a special relationship with him every day, even if we were only communicating through a brief text," Skaggs' friend and financial advisor Jeff Fishman said. "What more needs to be said about Tyler? All of you bear witness to the incredible impact he had on so many, and that qualifies Tyler as a first-ballot Hall of Famer in the most important game of all: the game of life."

      Current Angels players, staff and other employees arrived in buses. Other attendees included pitcher Matt Harvey, whom the Angels released Sunday, former major-leaguer Trevor Plouffe and former Angels manager Mike Scioscia. Plouffe, who had been friends with Skaggs since childhood, was one of the people who spoke at the service.

      After playing Sunday afternoon in Seattle, the Angels had Monday off, allowing the team the time to hold the service in Skaggs' hometown, an hour's drive from Angel Stadium.

      --Field Level Media

  • MLB notebook: Brewers' Woodruff (side) likely out 6 weeks
    By Field Level Media / Monday, July 22, 2019

    Milwaukee All-Star right-hander Brandon Woodruff is expected to miss six weeks after sustaining a left oblique strain during the Brewers' game Sunday against the Arizona Diamondbacks, manager Craig Counsell announced Monday.

    • That timetable would potentially leave the Brewers without their best starting pitcher until September. An MRI exam detected the seriousness of the injury, prompting the team to place Woodruff on the 10-day injured list.

      Woodruff, 26, was injured in the fourth inning Sunday while throwing a pitch -- the second of the inning -- to Arizona's Tim Locastro.

      Woodruff is 11-3 with a 3.75 ERA and 136 strikeouts in 20 starts this season. To replace him on the roster, Milwaukee recalled right-hander Burch Smith from Triple-A San Antonio. Smith, 29, was 0-1 with a 5.06 ERA in six relief appearances with the Brewers earlier this season.

      --The Chicago Cubs reportedly are one of the teams interested in acquiring Detroit Tigers slugger Nicholas Castellanos before the July 31 trade deadline.

      According to the Detroit News, the rumor "has some teeth," and the Cubs likely would move Jason Heyward to center field and slot Castellanos in right field. Castellanos, 27, is batting .284 with 11 homers and 36 RBIs in 93 games this season.

      The right-handed hitter is batting .387 and slugging .694 against left-handers, which has been a weakness for the Cubs' lineup this season. Castellanos hit a walk-off home run Sunday -- the first of his career -- then said of Detroit's cavernous Comerica Park, "This park's a joke."

      --Hoping to get Carl Edwards Jr. back on track again, the Cubs optioned the right-hander back to Triple-A Iowa, his second demotion of the season.

      He gave up a run on a hit and a walk after a third of an inning Sunday against the San Diego Padres. The outing left him with a 5.87 ERA in 20 appearances this season. Edwards, 27, who has also dealt with a thoracic strain this season.

      The Cubs recalled right-hander Rowan Wick. The former catcher and outfielder had a 3.86 ERA in five appearances with the Cubs earlier this season.

      --The Texas Rangers put closer Shawn Kelley on the 10-day injured list due to a sore right biceps. The team called up right-hander Rafael Montero from Triple-A Nashville in a corresponding move and designated outfielder Carlos Tocci for assignment.

      Kelly, 35, is 5-2 with a 3.00 ERA and 11 saves in 15 chances across 32 appearances this season. He left Texas' 5-3 loss in Houston on Sunday after throwing warmup pitches in the bottom of the eighth inning. An MRI that night revealed no acute injury, according to the team.

      Kelley had not pitched since July 12. This is his second stint on the IL, as he was out from May 6-21 after surgery to remove two lumps from his throat.

      --The Minnesota Twins placed first baseman C.J. Cron on the 10-day injured list due to right thumb inflammation.

      Cron, 29, is batting .263 with 18 homers and 55 RBIs in 83 games this season. The move is retroactive to Sunday.

      The Twins also optioned right-hander Zack Littell to Triple-A Rochester and called up left-hander Lewis Thorpe and right-hander Cody Stashak, both from Rochester.

      --The Detroit Tigers signed veteran right-hander Edwin Jackson, who was released by the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday, to a minor league deal.

      Jackson is set to join Triple-A Toledo, according to MLB.com.

      Jackson, 35, has played with a major-league-record 14 teams, but he is making a return to the Tigers organization. He pitched for Detroit in 2009 when he went 13-9 with a 3.62 ERA and was named to his only All-Star team.

      --The Pittsburgh Pirates suspended right-hander Keone Kela for two games due to an unspecified violation of his contract.

      Manager Clint Hurdle was vague when asked about Kela prior to Monday's game, saying the team was evaluating his status. The team announced the suspension a short time later.

      The Pirates activated Kela from the 60-day injured list before putting him on the suspended list. He last pitched for Pittsburgh on May 4 before going on the IL due to shoulder discomfort.

      --The Cincinnati Reds placed right-hander Tyler Mahle on the 10-day injured list because of a strained left hamstring. The Reds recalled right-hander Sal Romano from Triple-A Louisville in a corresponding move.

      Mahle sustained the injury Friday during his start against the St. Louis Cardinals.

      --The New York Yankees recalled right-hander Jonathan Holder just short of a month after he was sent back to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

      Holder replaced left-hander Stephen Tarpley on the roster after the Yankees optioned the reliever following Sunday's game.

      --Field Level Media

  • Brewers RHP Woodruff out 6 weeks with oblique injury
    By Field Level Media / Monday, July 22, 2019

    Milwaukee Brewers All-Star right-hander Brandon Woodruff is expected to miss six weeks after suffering a left oblique strain during Sunday's game against the Arizona Diamondbacks, manager Craig Counsell revealed to reporters Monday.

    • That timetable would potentially leave the Brewers without their best starting pitcher until September. An MRI exam detected the seriousness of the injury.

      Woodruff, who was enjoying his best season, was injured in the fourth inning of Sunday's game while throwing a pitch -- the second of the inning -- to Arizona's Tim Locastro.

      "I came out for the fourth inning there and warmup pitches were all good, and then that first pitch I threw in the fourth, I kind of felt a little grab, nothing too big," Woodruff told reporters prior to Monday's game against the Cincinnati Reds. "But then, the second pitch, I really felt it grab pretty good. Hopefully it's precautionary, hopefully it doesn't take too long, hopefully I'll get over it pretty quick and get back to pitching."

      Woodruff, 26, is 11-3 with a 3.75 ERA and 136 strikeouts in 20 starts this season. Right-hander Zach Davies (8-2, 2.79) has been the team's only other consistent starter.

      Woodruff said his focus will be on getting healthy and being mentally ready to help the club compete for a postseason berth once he returns.

      "You can look back and think of every possible way that it happened and beat yourself up about it, but I think you've just got to realize that injuries are part of the game," Woodruff said. "You want to be fortunate to stay away from them, but sometimes you can't avoid them. I think, for me, it's just kind of remembering where I was at and getting back as quick as I can."

      With Woodruff placed on the 10-day injured list, right-hander Burch Smith was recalled from Triple-A San Antonio.

      The 29-year-old Smith was 0-1 with a 5.06 ERA in six relief appearances with the Brewers earlier this season. He is 2-10 with a 6.62 ERA in 54 career appearances (13 starts) with the San Diego Padres (2013), Kansas City Royals (2018) and Brewers.

      --Field Level Media

  • Pirates RHP Kela suspended two games
    By Field Level Media / Monday, July 22, 2019

    The Pittsburgh Pirates announced that they have suspended right-hander Keone Kela for two games due to an unspecified violation of his contract.

    • Kela began serving the suspension Monday night when the Pirates opened a four-game home series against the St. Louis Cardinals.

      Manager Clint Hurdle was vague when asked about Kela prior to Monday's game, saying the team was evaluating his status. Pittsburgh announced the suspension a short time later.

      The Pirates activated Kela from the 60-day injured list before putting him on the suspended list. He last pitched for Pittsburgh on May 4 before going on the IL with shoulder discomfort.

      Kela, 26, was 1-0 with a 4.63 ERA in 14 appearances prior to the injury. He had a 2.93 ERA in 16 games for Pittsburgh last season after being acquired from the Texas Rangers on July 31. Kela had 24 saves for the Rangers.

      Overall, Kela is 20-11 with a 3.48 ERA in 210 career relief appearances since breaking in with Texas in 2015.

      --Field Level Media

  • Rangers closer Kelley (biceps) placed on IL
    By Field Level Media / Monday, July 22, 2019

    The Texas Rangers put closer Shawn Kelley on the 10-day injured list Monday with a sore right biceps.

    • The 35-year-old right-hander is 5-2 with a 3.00 ERA and 11 saves in 15 chances across 32 appearances this season.

      Kelley left Sunday's 5-3 loss in Houston after throwing warmup pitches in the bottom of the eighth inning. An MRI that night revealed no acute injury, according to the team.

      Kelley had not pitched since July 12. This is his second stint on the IL, as he was out from May 6-21 after surgery to remove two lumps from his throat.

      The Rangers called up right-hander Rafael Montero from Triple-A Nashville in a corresponding move and designated outfielder Carlos Tocci for assignment.

      Montero, 28, who pitched in 58 games for the New York Mets over parts of four seasons, last appeared in a major league game on Oct. 1, 2017 at Philadelphia. He is 6-16 with a 5.38 ERA in the majors.

      Tocci, 23, has batted .246 with four homers and 31 RBIs in 87 games this season at Nashville.

      --Field Level Media

  • Reds RHP Mahle lands on IL
    By Field Level Media / Monday, July 22, 2019

    The Cincinnati Reds placed right-hander Tyler Mahle on the 10-day injured list Monday with a strained left hamstring.

    • He suffered the injury Friday during his start against the St. Louis Cardinals. Mahle allowed four runs on seven hits in 5 1/3 innings in Cincinnati's 12-11 loss.

      Mahle, 24, is 2-10 with a 4.93 ERA in 19 starts this season. He has struck out 106 batters and walked 26 while giving up 18 homers in 102 1/3 innings.

      The Reds recalled right-hander Sal Romano from Triple-A Louisville in a corresponding move.

      Romano, 25, is 4-7 with a 4.70 ERA in 35 games (three starts) at Louisville this season. He was 8-11 with a 5.31 ERA in 39 games (25 starts) for the Reds in 2018.

      --Field Level Media

  • Cubs reportedly interested in Tigers OF Castellanos
    By Field Level Media / Monday, July 22, 2019

    The Chicago Cubs are reportedly one of the teams interested in acquiring Detroit Tigers slugger Nicholas Castellanos before the July 31 trade deadline.

    • The Detroit News said Monday that the rumor "has some teeth," and the Cubs would likely move Jason Heyward to center field and slot Castellanos in right field.

      Castellanos, 27, is batting .284 with 11 homers and 36 RBIs in 93 games this season.

      The right-handed hitter is batting .387 and slugging .694 against left-handers, which has been a weakness for the Cubs' lineup this season.

      Based on his comments Sunday after hitting a walk-off home run -- the first of his career -- against the Toronto Blue Jays, Castellanos is ready to leave Detroit's cavernous Comerica Park.

      "This park's a joke," he said. "It's to the point where, how are we going to be compared to the rest of the people in the league for power numbers, OPS, slugging and all this stuff when we got a yard out here that's 420 feet straight across in center field?"

      Castellanos, who set career highs with 26 home runs and 101 RBIs in 2017, also led the majors in triples that season and currently leads the big leagues with 34 doubles.

      He said he isn't concerned about the trade speculation.

      "I'm at the point where I really don't care what happens," he said. "Why care? I can't control it. Why care if one day my hair is going to turn gray if I can't control it? I don't know if that analogy makes any sense, but it popped into my head."

      Castellanos, who debuted with Detroit in 2013, is set to become a free agent after this season. He is earning $9.95 million this season.

      --Field Level Media

  • Twins place 1B Cron (thumb) on 10-day IL
    By Field Level Media / Monday, July 22, 2019

    The Minnesota Twins placed first baseman C.J. Cron on the 10-day injured list Monday due to right thumb inflammation.

    • Cron, 29, is batting .263 with 18 homers and 55 RBIs in 83 games this season. The move is retroactive to Sunday.

      The Twins also optioned right-hander Zack Littell to Triple-A Rochester and called up left-hander Lewis Thorpe and right-hander Cody Stashak, both from Rochester.

      Thorpe, 23, made his major league debut on June 30 against the Chicago White Sox, allowing two runs on five hits in five innings. He struck out seven and walked two.

      Stashak, 25, is in line to make his debut. He was 5-0 with a 1.61 ERA in 12 games (two starts) with the Red Wings.

      Littell, 23, was 2-0 with a 4.91 ERA in 14 relief appearances with Minnesota.

      --Field Level Media

  • Cubs demote struggling RHP Edwards
    By Field Level Media / Monday, July 22, 2019

    Hoping to get Carl Edwards Jr. back on track again, the Chicago Cubs optioned the right-hander back to Triple-A Iowa on Monday, according to multiple reports

    • Edwards is being sent back to Iowa for the second time this season.

      He gave up a run on a hit and a walk after a third of an inning Sunday against the San Diego Padres. The outing left him with a 5.87 ERA in 20 appearances this season.

      Edwards, 27, who has also dealt with a thoracic strain this season, has fared well in a small sample size at Triple-A. He was 2-0 earlier this season in 11 outings with a 1.54 ERA.

      In five seasons with the Cubs, Edwards is 9-8 with two saves and has a 3.30 ERA in 192 appearances. He had a career-best 2.60 ERA last season in 58 appearances.

      The Cubs recalled right-hander Rowan Wick. The former catcher and outfielder had a 3.86 ERA in five appearances with the Cubs earlier this season. He has a 5.28 ERA in 15 career appearances with the Padres and Cubs.

      --Field Level Media

  • Yankees return RHP Holder back to bullpen
    By Field Level Media / Monday, July 22, 2019

    The New York Yankees recalled right-hander Jonathan Holder on Monday just short of a month after he was sent back to Triple-A Scranton Wilkes-Barre.

    • Holder replaced left-hander Stephen Tarpley on the roster after Yankees optioned the reliever following Sunday's game.

      Holder was 5-2 with a 6.81 with the Yankees in 31 relief appearances before he was optioned following a June 24 outing against the Toronto Blue Jays when he gave up five runs without recording an out. He gave up eight earned runs over his last two outings.

      At Triple-A, Holder was 1-1 with a 3.48 ERA in seven appearances, recording one save.

      Tarpley had a 6.59 ERA in 13 outings with the Yankees, starting one game. He gave up one run on two hits over 1 1/3 innings in the Yankees' loss Sunday to the Colorado Rockies.

      --Field Level Media

  • Veteran RHP Jackson signs minor league deal with Tigers
    By Field Level Media / Monday, July 22, 2019

    The Detroit Tigers signed a minor-league deal with veteran right-hander Edwin Jackson, who was released by the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday.

    • Jackson is set to join Triple-A Toledo, according to MLB.com.

      Jackson, 35, has played with a major league-record 14 teams, but he is making a return to the Tigers organization. He pitched for Detroit in 2009 when he went 13-9 with a 3.62 ERA and was named to his only All-Star team.

      Over 17 major league seasons, Jackson is 105-128 with a 4.70 ERA in 402 appearances (310 starts). He was 1-5 with an 11.12 ERA in eight appearances (five starts) with the Blue Jays this season. He was designated for assignment by the Blue Jays on Tuesday.

      --Field Level Media

  • MLB roundup: Yastrzemski, Giants walk off in 12th
    By Field Level Media / Sunday, July 21, 2019

    The San Francisco Giants worked their extra-inning magic on the visiting New York Mets once again Sunday afternoon, getting a walk-off, opposite-field home run from Mike Yastrzemski in the bottom of the 12th for a 3-2 victory.

    • The win was the Giants' third in the four-game series, all in extra innings. They prevailed 3-2 in 16 innings on Thursday and 1-0 in 10 on Friday before getting overpowered 11-4 on Saturday.

      Yastrzemski's homer, his ninth in just 48 games with the Giants, came off the sixth Mets' pitcher, Robert Gsellman (1-2), on a full-count pitch with one out. The left-handed hitter sent a high fly just a row or two deep into the left field bleachers.

      Trevor Gott (6-0) got the win after pitching a scoreless top of the 12th, capping a run of six relievers who held the Mets to two hits over the final seven innings.

      Twins 7, A's 6

      Max Kepler went 3-for-6 with four RBIs and drove in the winning run with a two-out single in the bottom of the ninth, as Minnesota rallied for a victory over Oakland in Minneapolis.

      Kepler also homered and doubled as the Twins won for just the second time in seven games. Ehire Adrianza had tied the game earlier in the ninth off Liam Hendriks (4-1), who was pitching in his third consecutive game, when he tripled off the top of the wall in right field, driving in Luis Arraez.

      Josh Phegley homered and drove in three runs, and Matt Chapman had two hits for Oakland, which lost for just the second time in 10 games despite garnering nine walks off five Minnesota pitchers.

      Tigers 4, Blue Jays 3 (10 innings)

      Nicholas Castellanos led off the bottom of the 10th inning with his 11th home run of the season on the first pitch from Tim Mayza, and Detroit defeated the visiting Toronto.

      JaCoby Jones also homered for the Tigers, who avoided being swept in the three-game series to end a six-game losing streak. Nick Ramirez (5-3) pitched around a double in the 10th to pick up the win. Mayza (0-1) took the loss.

      Lourdes Gurriel Jr. tied the game at 3 with a two-run homer in the top of the ninth against Shane Greene and had three RBIs for the Blue Jays. The Blue Jays completed a 4-6 road trip.

      Phillies 2, Pirates 1 (11 innings)

      Rhys Hoskins' solo home run in the 11th inning lifted visiting Philadelphia to a win over Pittsburgh.

      With a 1-1 tie and the Phillies facing Pirates reliever Chris Stratton (1-3) in the 11th, Bryce Harper struck out before Hoskins just cleared the fence in left field on a 1-2 pitch for his 21st homer.

      Philadelphia reliever Ranger Suarez (3-0) pitched scoreless 10th and 11th innings. Cesar Hernandez had an RBI single for the Phillies, who took two of three in the series.

      Dodgers 9, Marlins 0

      Max Muncy, Joc Pederson and A.J. Pollock hit home runs, while Walker Buehler struck out 11, as Los Angeles completed a three-game sweep of visiting Miami.

      Buehler (9-1) recorded his first six outs via strikeout and gave up five hits and no walks in seven scoreless innings. He won at home for the first time since June 21, when he struck out a career-best 16 Colorado Rockies batters.

      Jordan Yamamoto (4-1) gave up five runs on four hits over four innings with two walks and four strikeouts, in his first career loss in his seventh career start. He matched his career high of four runs allowed by the third inning. The loss ended the third-longest winning streak to open a career for a Marlins pitcher.

      Brewers 7, Diamondbacks 4

      Mike Moustakas, Yasmani Grandal and Ben Gamel drove in eighth-inning runs as Milwaukee broke a 4-4 tie, and five relievers shut out Arizona over six innings in a win in Phoenix.

      Milwaukee trailed 4-0 after three innings, but light-hitting Tyler Saladino tied the game with a grand slam in the fourth inning.

      In the eighth inning, Moustakas followed a leadoff triple by Keston Hiura with a hard single up the middle off Yoan Lopez (1-4) to give the Brewers a 5-4 lead. Grandal launched a shot off the wall in center field for a pinch-hit RBI double, and Gamel's single completed the scoring.

      Rockies 8, Yankees 4

      German Marquez pitched seven sharp innings, Charlie Blackmon with 4-for-5 with a leadoff home run and Colorado broke a six-game losing streak with a victory at New York.

      Marquez (9-5) allowed only three hits, including solo homers to former Rockies DJ LeMahieu and Mike Tauchman. Marquez gave up two runs, struck out five and walked two in a 95-pitch outing six days after allowing 11 runs in 1 1/3 innings in a 19-2 loss to San Francisco.

      Colorado won for just the third time in its last 16 games.

      Astros 5, Rangers 3

      Michael Brantley homered twice, while Rogelio Armenteros pitched five solid innings to earn his first major league win as Houston downed visiting Texas, completing a sweep of the three-game series.

      In his first MLB start, the 25-year old Armenteros (1-0) permitted just two hits and a run, walking two and fanning six. Four relievers obtained the last 12 outs, with Roberto Osuna pitching the ninth to garner his 22nd save despite allowing a one-out solo homer to Logan Forsythe, his sixth of the year.

      Lance Lynn (12-6) pitched well but suffered his second straight loss for Texas despite striking out a season-high 12 batters over seven innings.

      Orioles 5, Red Sox 0

      Trey Mancini hit two home runs, and starter Asher Wojciechowski carried a no-hitter into the seventh inning as Baltimore defeated visiting Boston in the series finale.

      Mancini recorded his second multi-homer game of the week, touching up former teammate Andrew Cashner for a solo shot plus a two-run blast off him later. Jonathan Villar also added a solo homer as the Orioles won two of three in this series.

      Wojciechowski (1-3) earned his first victory in the major leagues since 2017 when the right-hander pitched with Cincinnati. Overall, he gave up just one hit in 7 1/3 innings, struck out 10 with two walks and received a big ovation when manager Brandon Hyde removed him in the eighth.

      Rays 4, White Sox 2

      Travis d'Arnaud smacked his first career grand slam, Blake Snell pitched six shutout innings and Tampa Bay beat visiting Chicago to snap a five-game losing streak.

      The struggling Tampa Bay offense managed just three hits and was unable to add runs after d'Arnaud's second-inning homer, but Snell and three relievers made the lead stand up.

      Snell (6-7) turned in his fourth straight solid outing, allowing three hits and walking two while striking out 10.

      Padres 5, Cubs 1

      Catcher Francisco Mejia homered to lead off the seventh inning to break a 1-1 tie and had a key bunt single as San Diego added three runs in the ninth for a victory over host Chicago.

      Cal Quantrill (3-2) threw 5 2/3 scoreless innings in relief for the Padres, giving up two hits without issuing a walk. He struck out six, four of which came as he ended his outing by retiring 10 straight Cubs. Kirby Yates struck out three in the ninth in a non-save situation.

      Quantrill followed Adrian Morejon, who allowed a run on three hits and a strikeout in 2 1/3 innings while making his major league debut as an opener at the age of 20 years and 144 days.

      Braves 7, Nationals 1

      Kevin Gausman came off the injured list to throw seven-plus strong innings and pace Atlanta over visiting Washington.

      Gausman (3-5) left the game after allowing two leadoff hits in the eighth, one of which led to a run. He gave up five hits and struck out eight. The veteran right-hander had been idle with right foot plantar fasciitis since June 11 and began his rehab assignments on July 5. He earned his first win since May 11.

      The win gave the Braves a split of the four-game series.

      Cardinals 3, Reds 1

      Yairo Munoz singled, tripled and homered to lift St. Louis to a win over host Cincinnati in the finale of their four-game series.

      Munoz drove in two runs and scored two for the Cardinals, who won three of four in the series.

      Cardinals starter Jack Flaherty blanked the Reds over 4 1/3 innings, but remains winless over his past 11 starts. Flaherty scattered six hits, struck out seven and walked two.

      Indians 5, Royals 4

      Jose Ramirez belted the go-ahead homer to ignite a three-run sixth inning as host Cleveland posted a victory over Kansas City.

      Francisco Lindor launched a two-run homer, and Kevin Plawecki and rookie Oscar Mercado each added an RBI single for the Indians, who won the rubber match of the series to improve to 13-3 in their past 16 games.

      Rookie Zach Plesac (4-3) overcame a rocky start to allow two runs on four hits with six strikeouts in six innings to pick up the win.

      Angels 9, Mariners 3

      Dillon Peters, recalled from Triple-A prior to the game, pitched five shutout innings as Los Angeles defeated host Seattle.

      Albert Pujols, Brian Goodwin, Mike Trout and Dustin Garneau homered for the Angels, who took two of three games in the series and are 7-3 since the All-Star break.

      Dee Gordon went 3-for-4 for the Mariners, who dropped to 1-8 in their past nine games.

      --Field Level Media

  • MLB notebook: Smith, Rivera close out HOF ceremonies
    By Field Level Media / Sunday, July 21, 2019

    Lee Smith and Mariano Rivera combined to finish 1,754 games as big leaguers. On Sunday afternoon, they closed things out one more time.

    • In an appropriate touch, Smith and Rivera were the last two people to take the podium at Clark Sports Center, where an estimated 55,000 fans gathered on a warm afternoon for the ceremonies inducting the two closers as well as Harold Baines, Edgar Martinez, Mike Mussina and the late Roy Halladay into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

      Rivera opened his speech with a line that indicated he could have a second career as a stand-up comic.

      "I don't understand why I always have to be last," said Rivera, who racked up a record 652 saves and finished 952 games, the most in history, before becoming the first player to ever earn unanimous election into the Hall of Fame.

      --Milwaukee Brewers right-hander Brandon Woodruff is headed to the 10-day injured list with a strained left oblique muscle.

      Woodruff, a first-time All-Star this season, left his start in Phoenix against the Arizona Diamondbacks two pitches into the fourth inning with what the team described a few innings later as abdominal discomfort. He began the day 11-3 with a 3.53 ERA but struggled through his first three innings.

      The Brewers said Woodruff would undergo an MRI on Monday in Milwaukee to determine the severity of the injury.

      --The Tampa Bay Rays placed outfielder Kevin Kiermaier on the 10-day injured list with a left thumb sprain.

      He suffered the injury Saturday night in the eighth inning of a 2-1 loss to the White Sox, jamming his thumb while sliding into first base. It's the latest in a series of hand injuries for Kiermaier.

      The Tampa Bay Times reported that an MRI showed no serious ligament damage or fractures. He is expected to return in the next 10 to 15 days. On the season, Kiermaier is batting .248 with 10 home runs and a career-high 43 RBIs.

      --The Colorado Rockies designated veteran slugger Mark Reynolds for assignment.

      In 78 games, Reynolds was batting just .170 with four homers and 20 RBIs. He fanned 57 times in 135 at-bats.

      Reynolds, who turns 36 next month, said he will go home to Virginia and decide whether to continue playing. He has slugged 298 homers over 13 seasons.

      --The San Francisco Giants designated struggling left-handed pitcher Derek Holland for assignment along with infielder Ryder Jones.

      Holland, who signed a one-year, $7 million deal with the Giants in the offseason, started the season in the starting rotation, then was demoted to the bullpen.

      On the year, the 32-year-old Holland is 2-4 with a 5.90 ERA. He's appeared in 31 games (seven starts), throwing 68 2/3 innings.

      --The St. Louis Cardinals made a bevy of moves, which included recalling infielder Rangel Ravelo and left-hander Tyler Webb from Triple-A Memphis.

      In corresponding moves, the team optioned right-handers Ryan Helsley and Dominic Leone to Memphis.

      Ravelo, who made the Triple-A All-Star team, is hitting .313 with nine home runs and 43 RBIs in 77 games with Memphis this season. It's the third call-up this season for Ravelo, 27, who played in more than 800 minor league games before making his MLB debut in June.

      --Field Level Media

  • Last equates to first for Rivera, headliner of Hall of Fame class
    By Field Level Media / Sunday, July 21, 2019

    COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. -- Lee Smith and Mariano Rivera combined to finish 1,754 games as big leaguers. On Sunday afternoon, they closed things out one more time.

    • In an appropriate touch, Smith and Rivera were the last two people to take the podium at Clark Sports Center, where an estimated 55,000 fans gathered on a warm afternoon for the ceremonies inducting the two closers as well as Harold Baines, Edgar Martinez, Mike Mussina and the late Roy Halladay into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

      Rivera opened his speech with a line that indicated he could have a second career as a stand-up comic.

      "I don't understand why I always have to be last," said Rivera, who racked up a record 652 saves and finished 952 games, the most in history, before becoming the first player to ever earn unanimous election into the Hall of Fame.

      Smith, who was the all-time leader in saves (478) and games finished (802) upon his retirement in 1997, earned some laughs a few minutes earlier, when he touched on his brief stop with the Yankees in September 1993, when he collected three saves while Rivera was still in Class-A ball.

      "The Yankees, who it turns out, didn't need a closer," Smith said.

      Smith, who spent 15 years on the writers ballot before being elected by the Today's Game Era Committee last December, wasn't the only specialist who waited a long time for Sunday. Martinez, who batted .312 while spending most his time at designated hitter during his 18-year career with the Seattle Mariners, got in on his 10th and final year of eligibility (the eligibility limit was reduced to 10 years in 2014).

      "There were times over the last 10 years I didn't think it was going to happen," Martinez said.

      Fellow designated hitter Baines finished with 2,866 hits but played just 38 games in the outfield after the 1989 season. Baines, who never got 10 percent of the vote during his time on the writers' ballot, joined Smith as a Today's Game Era selection.

      "I stand here today very humbled for this honor," Baines said. "It has taken time to sink in."

      Mussina, who won 270 games for the Yankees and Baltimore Orioles, noted his career was defined by near-misses. He threw four one-hitters and came within a strike of throwing a perfect game against the Boston Red Sox in 2001. Mussina never won a World Series, though he twice reached the Fall Classic with the Yankees, and finished in the top five six times in the Cy Young Award balloting without winning.

      "Maybe I was saving up from all of those almost achievements for one last push," Mussina said. "And this time, I made it."

      The most poignant speech was delivered by Halladay's widow, Brandy. Roy Halladay, who joined Rivera as a first-ballot inductee after winning 203 games and two Cy Young Awards for the Toronto Blue Jays and Philadelphia Phillies, died in a plane crash on Nov. 7, 2017.

      "This is not my speech to give," Brandy Halladay said. "I'm going to do the best I can to say the things I believe Roy might have said or would have wanted to say if he was here today."

      --Field Level Media

  • Brewers All-Star Woodruff bound for IL with oblique strain
    By Field Level Media / Sunday, July 21, 2019

    Milwaukee Brewers right-hander Brandon Woodruff is headed to the 10-day injured list with a strained left oblique muscle.

    • Woodruff, a first-time All-Star this season, left his start in Phoenix against the Arizona Diamondbacks two pitches into the fourth inning Sunday with what the team described a few innings later as abdominal discomfort. He began the day 11-3 with a 3.53 ERA but struggled through the first three innings, throwing 78 pitches, 50 for strikes, as the Diamondbacks scored each inning to jump to a 4-0 lead.

      The Brewers said Woodruff would undergo an MRI on Monday in Milwaukee to determine the severity of the injury.

      Woodruff started the fourth by getting a called strike on Tim Locastro. As Locastro fouled off the next pitch, Woodruff walked behind the mound in apparent discomfort, and after the trainer and manager Craig Counsell came out to check on him, he left the game.

      "I came out for the fourth inning there and warmup pitches were all good, and then that first pitch I threw in the fourth, I kind of felt a little grab, nothing too big," Woodruff told reporters. "But then, the second pitch, I really felt it grab pretty good. Hopefully it's precautionary, hopefully it doesn't take too long, hopefully I'll get over it pretty quick and get back to pitching."

      --Field Level Media