For occasional updates on author appearances, interviews, and book reviews.
For occasional updates on author appearances, interviews, and book reviews.
Ryan Braun had two singles and a walk as the Milwaukee Brewers (81-70) once again shut out the host Pittsburgh Pirates, this time by a score of 1-0 thanks to a Domingo Santana home run in the fourth inning. The Brewers are now one game behind the Colorado Rockies for the second NL Wild Card spot.
Alex Bregman hit his 36th double to drive in what proved to be the winning run as the Houston Astros (92-58) beat the visiting Chicago White Sox, 3-1. It was his only hit in three at-bats in a game that was played in a tidy two hours and forty-seven minutes.
Ian Kinsler hit his MOT-leading 20th home run to put the Detroit Tigers (62-89) on the scoreboard in what would be a 9-8 loss to the visiting Oakland As. No surprise, it was another solo shot. Wonder where he’ll wind up next year?
Kevin Pillar matched Bregman by hitting his 36th double — his only hit in three at-bats — as the Toronto Blue Jays (71-80) beat the visiting KC Royals, 5-2. Pillar also scored one of the Jays’ runs.
Danny Valencia was 0-for-1 with a walk as the Seattle Mariners (74-77) lost to the visiting Texas Rangers, 3-1. Valencia came out of the game for a pinch-hitter in the seventh. Wouldn’t be too surprised if he wound up playing for his eight team in nine years in 2018.
Ryan Sherriff allowed a hit and walked one in 1.1 scoreless innings of relief for the St. Louis Cardinals, who beat the host Cincinnati Reds, 8-7, in 10 innings.
Joc Pederson did not appear for the LA Dodgers (96-55) in their 6-2 loss to the host Philadelphia Phillies. Richard Bleier did not appear for the Baltimore Orioles (73-79) in their 1-0, 11-inning loss to the visiting Boston Red Sox. Max Fried did not appear for the Atlanta Braves (67-82) in their 4-2 loss to the visiting Washington Nationals. Scott Breslow did not appear for the Cleveland Indians (94-57) in their 6-3 win over the host LA Angels.
Here’s a bit of catching up with former Tiger and WBC Team Israel pitcher Josh Zeid via Bob Wechsler:
The Durham Bulls are my hometown team, so I’m glad they won the Triple-A championship game against the PCL champion Memphis Redbirds on Tuesday night.
The win came at the expense of Josh Zeid.
Memphis led 3-1 heading into the bottom of the fourth when Zeid came on to pitch his one inning. All three outs were strikeouts, but in between he hit a batter, gave up a single and a walk and then a two-out grand slam to Kean Wong.
Zeid (9-5, 5.49) had a long season, beginning with Team Israel in the WBC and ending in late September in the playoffs.
Lastly, I will not be posting during Rosh Hashana so I’ll see you all on Monday as the regular season winds down. Shan tova to all, and to all a good night.
The baseball-loving Hebrew nation turns its lonely eyes to you (woo-woo-woo).
Over/under: Zero JML will not play on Yom Kippur, which begins the evening of September 29. That means just one would have to take the day off specifically for that reason to make the cut. Very doubtful, although teams could easily rest some players since it’s the last series of the regular season. On the other hand, you want to please your fans by having your stars in the lineup.
The breakdown: The Houston Astros, Cleveland Indians, and LA Dodgers are all in. The only regular on those clubs is Alex Bregman, who’s battling a hamstring issue so the Astros might want to rest him for the playoffs. Joc Pederson has played sporadically and might not even be on the post-season roster. Craig Breslow hasn’t pitched in almost two weeks for the Indians and might not be in the Tribe’s plans.
Wild card issues: The Milwaukee Brewers are still in the hunt so they might require the services of Ryan Braun if it comes down to the wire. The Toronto Blue Jays and Kevin Pillar still have an outside shot. Danny Valencia has not been a regular since the Seattle Mariners acquired Yonder Alonso. Ryan Sherriff is a rookie and probably doesn’t figure in the St. Louis Cardinals’ plans.
Ian Kinsler and the Detroit Tigers are toast so he might he on his farewell tour.
Only two Jewish hitters in action and both hit home runs.
Ian Kinsler blasted his MOT-leading 19th (another solo job) but the Detroit Tigers (62-88) fell to the visiting Oakland As, 8-3. Kinsler drove in another run with his 24th double, so he accounted for 67 percent of his team’s scoring.
Ryan Braun gave the Milwaukee Brewers (80-70) the only run they would need as they shut out the host Pittsburgh Pirates, 3-0. Braun’s 17th came in the fourth inning. He also singled and stole his 12th base.
Things were not so bright for Richard Bleier, who gave up a hit and was charged with a run without retiring a batter as the Baltimore Orioles (73-78) lost in 11 to the visiting Boston Red Sox, 10-8.
Joc Pederson did not appear for the LA Dodgers (96-54) in their 4-3 loss to the host Philadelphia Phillies.
Everyone else had the day off.
Just FYI, the Cleveland Indians (Craig Breslow) and Houston Astros (Alex Bregman) have clinched their divisions (AL Central and West, respectively) while the Dodgers, despite their MLB-best record, have just secured a spot in the post-season (NL West). Mathematically, the Brewers, Orioles, Toronto Blue Jays (Kevin Pillar), and St. Louis Cardinals (Ryan Sherriff) are all still alive for a Wild Card berth.
Mitchell Schwartz played all 53 offensive downs plus another five (17 percent) on special teams as the KC Chiefs improved to 2-0 after beating the visiting Philadelphia Eagles, 27-20.
Ali Marpet lined up for all 71 offensive plays for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers who beat the visiting Chicago Bears, 29-7, to gain their first victory.
Nate Ebner was not active for the New England Patriots (1-1) , who beat the host New Orleans Saints, 36-20.
And no, Tarik Cohen of the Bears is not Jewish. Just as the Chicago Tribune, who asked me.
NOTE: In the case of four-game series that began on Thursday, the numbers here cover only the games played Friday-Sunday.
Star honors for the weekend go to Ryan Braun, who was 5-for-13 with his 16th homer. He also had two doubles (24) and his second triple of the year. He drove in two, scored three, and walked twice as the Milwaukee Brewers (79-70) took two of three from the host Miami Marlins.
Ian Kinsler was 3-for-11 with two walks and two runs scored and his 14th stolen base as the Detroit Tigers (62-87) split their four-game series with the visiting Chicago Cubs. Among the hits was his 23rd double of the year.
Kevin Pillar had just one hit in nine at-bats for the Toronto Blue Jays (70-80) but it was a home run (#16) and put his team on the scoreboard in an eventual 4-3 win over the host Minnesota Twins. Pillar also walked twice in that one and scored another run. All told, he struck out four times over the weekend. Now, I haven’t seen every great defensive play of the year, but I have a hard time believing none of Pillar’s web-gems were not worthy for consideration in this made-up award orgy. Getting a bit tire of every single thing being “brought to you” or sponsored by some business entity.
Alex Bregman was 1-for-14 but the Houston Astros (91-58) swept the visiting Seattle Mariners. Perhaps he’s still hobbled by that nagging hamstring injury. Danny Valencia‘s only appearance came as the starting first baseman in the middle game in which he was 0-for-1 with a walk before being lifted for a pinch-hitter.
Joc Pederson struck out two of the three times he came to bat between Friday’s and Saturday’s games. The LA Dodgers (96-53) won two of their three games against the host Washington Nationals.
Richard Bleier had a so-so weekend for the Baltimore Orioles (73-77), who lost three of four to the host NY Yankees. Bleier appeared twice, tossing two scoreless innings on Friday (two hits, including a home run, and two strikeouts) and retiring the only batter he faced on Sunday to earn his third hold.
Ryan Sherriff retired the only batter he faced for the St. Louis Cardinals (77-72) against the Chicago Cubs on Saturday. The Cubs swept the three-game series.
The Cleveland Indians saw their winning streak stopped at 22 at the hands of the visiting KC Royals on Friday. Craig Breslow did not appear in that one. In fact, he hasn’t pitched since Sept. 9.
Max Fried did not appear for the Atlanta Braves (67-81), who dropped two of three to the visiting NY Mets.
Ian Kinsler hit home run #18, but the Detroit Tigers (60-86) nevertheless lost to the visiting Chicago White Sox, 17-7. Kinsler, who served as DH in this one, clubbed his shot in the ninth inning for his only hit in five at-bats. Prior to the game, Kinsler was presented with the 2017 Heart and Hustle Award by former Tigers favorite Willie Horton. I remember Horton from when I was a kid and was amazed to see how small he looked next to Kinsler. IO don’t know if I’m just sensitive when it comes to JMLs, but it seems Kinsler is the target of more than his share of antagonism within the local sports media.
In their previous game, the Tigers saw their catcher and manager ejected for arguing balls and strikes by Home plate umpire Quinn Walcott. Shortly thereafter, Walcott was hit by a pitched ball when the replacement backstop, John Hicks, failed to catch the throw. There was some speculation by sports pundits — including those on ESPN’s Pardon the Interruption — that it was a deliberate play. This reminded me of a scene in Philip Roth‘s underrated baseball book, The Great American Novel, in which Mike “The Mouth” Masterson, a home plate umpire, was intentionally hit in the throat by a fastball thrown by vindictive pitcher Gil Gamesh, thus ending the careers of both men. As Casey Stengel used to say, “You can look it up.” Needless to say, Brad Ausmus denies the accusations.
Getting back to yesterday, Kevin Pillar singled and doubled (#35), but the Toronto Blue Jays (68-79) fell to the host Minnesota Twins, 3-2 in 10 innings.
Alex Bregman also notched his 35th two-bagger. It was his only hit in five at-bats as the Houston Astros (88-58) beat the host LA Angels, 5-2. Bregman also scored a run and drove one in.
The Cleveland Indians (91-56) set a new record for consecutive wins when they beat the visiting KC Royals, also 3-2 in 10. Craig Breslow did not appear for the Tribe.
Ryan Sherriff did not appear for the St. Louis Cardinals (77-69) in their 5-3 win over the visiting Cincinnati Reds. Max Fried did not appear for the Atlanta Braves (66-79) in their 5-2 loss to the host Washington Nationals. Richard Bleier did not appear for the Baltimore Orioles (72-75) in their 13-5 loss to the host NY Yankees. Danny Valencia did not appear for the Seattle Mariners (74-73), who beat the host Texas Rangers, 10-4. Ryan Braun and the Milwaukee Brewers had the day off, as did Joc Pederson and the LA Dodgers.
Ian Kinsler was 0-5 as the Detroit Tigers (60-85) went into the record books as the team that gave the host Cleveland Indians (90-56) their 21st straight win, 5-3. In fact it was Kinsler who made the final out of the game, lining to left in the record-setting event. Craig Breslow did not appear for the Indians. Manager Brad Ausmus was ejected again, this time in the third inning for trying to come to the aid of his catcher, James McCann, who was tossed for arguing balls and strikes with home plate umpire Quinn Walcott.
St. Louis Cardinals’ rookie pitcher Ryan Sherriff had his first bad outing of his young career, he allowed to inherited runners to score, along with two of his own, by giving up a grand slam to the Cincinnati Reds’ Eugenia Suarez in the fifth inning of a 6-0 loss. The Cards are 76-9.
Danny Valencia was 1-for-4 and drove in a run on a sac fly as the Seattle Mariners (73-73) beat the host Texas Rangers, 8-3. He also made his 11th error of the season.
Alex Bregman was 1-for-4, splitting his time between thirds and second base defensively, as the Houston Astros (87-58) lost to the host LA Angels, 9-1.
Kevin Pillar was 1-for-4 as the Toronto Blue Jays (68-78) lost to the visiting Baltimore Orioles (72-74), 2-1. He struck out with the tying run on base to end the sixth inning and was smart not to throw the bat in disgust, thereby earning himself an ejection. Richard Bleier did not appear for the Orioles.
Ryan Braun did not appear for the Milwaukee Brewers (77-69) in their 8-2 win over the visiting Pittsburgh Pirates. Joc Pederson did not appear for the LA Dodgers (92-56), who beat the host San Francisco Giants, 4-1.
Max Fried did not appear for the Atlanta Braves (66-78) in their 8-2 win over the host Washington Nationals.
Ian Kinsler hit his 22nd double in four at-bats, but it didn’t matter: the Cleveland Indians (89-56) won their 20th in a row by beating the Detroit Tigers (60-84), 2-0. Craig Breslow did not appear for the Indians. And they’re still talking about whether or not to bring Brad Ausmus back as Tigers manager next year.
Alex Bregman was 1-for-3 as the Houston Astros (87-57) made the one run they scored in the second inning stand up for Justin Verlander, who threw eight shutout innings in the 1-0 win.
Kevin Pillar was 0-for-3 but scored the game-tying run in the bottom of the ninth following a lead-off walk. The Toronto Blue Jays (68-77) beat the visiting Baltimore Orioles (71-74), 3-2. Richard Bleier did not appear for the Orioles.
Ryan Braun was o-for-4 but scored one run and drove in another to help the Milwaukee Brewers (76-69) beat the host Pittsburgh Pirates, 5-3. Braun also stole his 11th base.
Joc Pederson did not appear for the LA Dodgers, who broke their 11-game losing streak with a 5-3 win over the host San Francisco Giants. Max Fried did not pitch for the Atlanta Braves (65-78) who fell to the Washington Nationals, 8-0. Danny Valencia did not appear for the Seattle Mariners (72-73) in their 10-3 win over the host Texas Rangers. Ryan Sherriff did not appear for the St. Louis Cardinals (76-68) who beat the visiting Cincinnati Reds, 13-4.
Are you ready for some football? I’m not. Every year I tell myself I’m really going to pay attention and bone up on the teams and players, and every year I just get older. Maybe this is finally the time. Some people complain that the football season is too long, opening the door for more injuries. Here’s an idea: Don’t start it until after the World Series. That way there’s no inter-sport competition. Of course, I also think the baseball season is too long and that post-season should never go past mid-October.
The New England Patriots began their season on an uncharacteristic note: with a loss. They fell to the visiting KC Chiefs in a runaway on Thursday, Sept. 7, by a score of 42-27. Mitchell Schwartz played every down on offense (69) plus another six (16 percent) on special teams for the victors. Some football wonks believe the Chiefs are Super Bowl contenders. Nate Ebner was not active for New England due to a shoulder injury; he had been listed as questionable prior to the game. Team owner Robert Kraft announced the Kraft family will match up to $1 million in funds donated to the American Red Cross in support of the Hurricane Harvey Disaster Relief Fund.
Ali Marpet and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers had the mis-timing of being scheduled against the Dolphins in Miami. That game was postponed.
The new guys — Gabe Marks of the NY Jets and Adam Bisnowaty of the NY Giants — did not make the final cut for their respective teams. On the bright side, they were signed to each club’s practice squads. See here for an explanation of just what that can mean. Bisnowaty had originally been waived but the Giants apparently change their mind. Not so lucky: quarterback Michael Bercovici, who was cut by the Los Angeles Chargers.
And no, Tarik Cohen of the Chicago Bears is not Jewish. Then again, neither is Julian Edelman (at least not according to the Jewish Sports Review), but some of us keep “claiming” him as such.
So that’s it, as far as Jewish NFLers go to this point. No Taylor Mays, no Erik Lorig, and, of course, no Geoff Schwartz. A shande. Especially since all the active MOTs are not in the marquee positions, so they won’t have much written about them unless something fantastic or tragic happens. Maybe Marks and Bisnowaty will get the call at some point.
Kevin Pillar was 1-for-4 as the Toronto Blue Jays (67-77) beat the visiting Baltimore Orioles (71-73), 5-4. Richard Bleier did not appear in the game for the Orioles.
Ian Kinsler was also 1-for-4 as the visiting Detroit Tigers (60-83) became another victim of the Cleveland Indians’ juggernaut, 11-0. He came out of the game for a defensive replacement. Craig Breslow did not appear for Cleveland (88-56), who won their 19th consecutive game, one shy of the AL record set by the Oakland As in 2002.
Ryan Braun did not get one of the three hits the Milwaukee Brewers (75-69) were able to muster in their 7-0 loss to the visiting Pittsburgh Pirates. He was o-for-3 with a walk.
Danny Valencia was 1-for-3 with a walk and a stolen base — just his second of the season — as the Seattle Mariners (71-73) fell to the host Texas Rangers, 5-3.
Joc Pederson did not appear for the LA Dodgers, who lost their 11th in a row and 16th of their last 17 at the hands of the host San Francisco Giants, 8-6. And the Dodgers are still 40 games over .500 (92-52).