Ian Kinsler was 2-for-10 with his 20th double, three walks, and a stolen base as the Detroit Tigers (54-69) dropped two of three to the visiting LA Dodgers (87-35). Despite the token handshake with umpire Angel Hernandez, as well as a fine, Kinsler stood by his comments that the arbiter might do better in another line of work. Steve Phillips, former GM of the NY Mets, criticized the ballplayer, saying on his MLB Network radio show that, “An umpire can’t say that a guy should be sent to the minor leagues to find a new job, that he’s not good enough to play in the league. It would be completely inappropriate.” I’m just putting that out there for the oppositionist point of view. Hernandez’s associates wore wristbands in solidarity:
“This week, a player publicly and harshly impugned the character and integrity of Angel Hernandez — a veteran umpire who has dedicated his career to baseball and the community,” the World Umpires Association (WUA) said in a statement. “The verbal attack on Angel denigrated the entire MLB umpiring staff and is unacceptable.”
Kinsler, speaking after the Tigers’ 3-0 loss to the Dodgers in Detroit on Saturday, said he didn’t care much at all about the umpires’ protest.
“I really don’t think too deeply into it. I hope they wear the white wristbands for the rest of their careers. I don’t care. I said what I felt and what I thought. If they take offense to that, that’s their problem.”
Joc Pederson started the first game of that series, going 1-for-3 with a run scored and an RBI. It was his only appearance since the team sent him to the minors when they acquired Curtis Granderson from the NY Mets. Disappointing but understandable: Pederson was hitting just .215 with 11 homers and 33 RBIs in 87 games. Hope to see him back soon.
Alex Bregman had himself a fine weekend: 5-for-13 with home runs in Friday’s and Saturday‘s games (15 on the year) along with his 30th double as the Houston Astros (76-48) took two of three from the visiting Oakland As. He drove in one run in each contest, bumping him up to 48. He also made a couple nice defensive moves on Friday.
Kevin Pillar also had a fine time with two hits in each game of the Toronto Blue Jays’ set against the host Chicago Cubs. Like Bregman, Pillar drove one across the plate in each game (32), but the Jays (59-65) lost all three games. He had two double’s in Friday’s loss, matching him with Bregman’s total.
Danny Valencia played in two of the three games between his Seattle Mariners (63-62) and the host Tampa Bay Rays. He was two-for-seven with his 61st RBI.
Ryan Braun started all three games for the Milwaukee Brewers (65-60) against the host Colorado Rockies, going 2-for-11 with a walk and two RBI (39). An article about a deal that was almost made with the Dodgers reminded me of a joke my boss told when a colleague of mine tried to alibi his way out of a situation: “And if my mother had wheels, she’d be a bus.” You had to be there.
More bad news for Scott Feldman: the Cincinnati Reds (53-72) put him back on the DL after just one appearance. I wouldn’t be surprised if he was done for the year.
Max Fried allowed a run on two hits in an inning of an 8-1 win by the Atlanta Braves (55-67) against the Reds yesterday for his only showing of the weekend.
After a couple of shaky outings, Richard Bleier appeared twice for the Baltimore Orioles (60-64) against the visiting LA Angels over the weekend: .2 innings with a walk in a 9-7 win on Friday followed by 1.1 innings the next day when he pitched a full scoreless inning in a 5-1 loss.
The Chicago White Sox (47-74) keep giving Brad Goldberg opportunities and he’s not making the best of them. His only appearance added to his ugly record: one run on one hit and two walks in Saturday’s 17-7 loss to the host Texas Rangers. Goldberg has a horrible WHIP (walks plus hits per inning) of 2.53. In 10.2 innings, he’s given up 13 hits and 14 walks while striking out just two. Sorry to say, but I know if I was on his team and saw him coming in from the bullpen, I would not be too happy.