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We were really close to seeing a no-hitter, while Tuesday was full of interesting games and transactions from the ever-confounding Angels. Let’s get into it!
Alex Cobb oh so close to history
We have shared how the Giants have become almost an automatic winner on Tuesday home games, donning their City Connect uniforms. With a 6-1 win over the Reds, it happened again, and it came really close to being in historic fashion. With an early 5-0 lead, Alex Cobb was in cruise control for most of the night, navigating a single baserunner allowed in the third inning (a hit that was quickly ruled as an error), and then retiring the next 17 opponents in order. He was clearly fatigued by the ninth, allowing his first walk of the game, but battled to get within one out of history. Alas, Spencer Steer put on a perfect swing against a splitter, hitting a ball just out of reach of the outfielders to drive in the only run for Cincinnati. Despite being well over his career-high in pitches, Cobb was allowed to stay in the game and earn the final out, which came via his eighth strikeout. He joins a long list of pitchers who lost a no-hitter in the final out of the game, but this outing could prove to be a spark plug for a team that is within striking distance of the playoffs.
Alex Cobb was ONE out away from a no-hitter! pic.twitter.com/nGc5PxLPip
— MLB (@MLB) August 30, 2023
A double gem at Wrigley
On a warm Chicago day in August, oddsmakers placed the over/under at a minuscule 6.5 runs, probably foreseeing the kind of game we would witness. As Corbin Burnes and Justin Steele got the ball, the pitching duel lived up to the billing and then some, giving us a vintage pitcher’s duel. Cody Bellinger’s RBI groundout in the first inning proved to be the winning run, as Burnes and Steele navigated a few jams to preserve the score. While both starters combined to strike out 15 batters over 13 innings, Burnes took the hard-luck loss, as Steele earned his 15th Win of the season, while finally putting an end to Milwaukee’s 9-game winning streak.
— MLB (@MLB) August 30, 2023
Angels wave (waive?) the white flag
The Angels’ post-trade deadline disaster took another ugly turn, as the team placed six veterans on waivers, including some of the very players they had acquired in the hopes of reaching the playoffs. Lucas Giolito, Matt Moore, Reynaldo López, Dominic Leone, Hunter Renfroe, and Randall Grichuk could be changing teams and still be eligible for a postseason roster, as the waiver claims should be announced later today. On the field, things were not much better for Anaheim, as they fell 12-7 to the Phillies, allowing five homers in the process. The decision to hold on to Shohei Ohtani and going all-in at the deadline has proven to be more than ill-advised, as the franchise will probably face a full, expensive rebuild entering the offseason.
Shohei Ohtani had three hits and drove in two runs and Luis Rengifo added a pair of home runs as the Los Angeles Angels lost to the Philadelphia Phillies, 12-7, and saw their playoff chances drop to just about zero. pic.twitter.com/Z07Ts5iMQN
— Codify (@CodifyBaseball) August 30, 2023
Kershaw keeps ownage of NL West
With a 9-1 drubbing of the Dbacks, Clayton Kershaw now owns a .700 career winning percentage (second all-time). Fun fact: only one team has given Kershaw a losing record (the Phillies), and he has made it a habit of toying with his NL West counterparts. Today was career start #44 against Arizona, as the veteran lefty earned his 22nd win, which is actually the lowest total he has against a divisional opponent. While today’s outing was shortened by LA’s healthy run support and load management, Kershaw delivered another solid outing, with only one run allowed over 5 innings. The win secured yet another winning season for the Dodgers, as they remain in striking distance of the Braves for the NL’s best record.
Kershaw Day. pic.twitter.com/yXwJ5fxJm8
— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) August 30, 2023
Bullpen wastes a Cole Ragans masterpiece
A late August game between the Pirates and Royals should almost be negligible by law…except if PitcherList darling Cole Ragans is on the mound. The lefty was again masterful, tossing seven scoreless innings in which he allowed only four baserunners against nine strikeouts. He left the game with a meager 1-0 lead, which was quickly squandered by a trio of Royals relievers, turning the possible win into a tough 6-3 loss. Ragans will close August with a 2.12 ERA for the month, including 44 strikeouts in 29.2 innings, making him probably the best mid-season acquisition of 2023, even if he landed in a non-contender.
Cole Ragans turned in a gem pic.twitter.com/s2AjfdsTEv
— Talkin’ Baseball (@TalkinBaseball_) August 30, 2023
Best Moments From Yesterday
Mustache fever…catch it!
While the Blue Jays have recently struggled with injuries and seen their playoff spot in danger, at least they can point toward an epic mustache as a sign of hope. With all of 13 games under his belt, the former 28th-round pick (!!!) has now 6 homers, 14 RBI, and a not-a-misprint .911 slugging percentage. While small sample size caveats certainly apply, the citizens of Toronto are certainly enjoying the ride.
The legend of Davis Schneider's mustache is growing in Toronto. 🥸 pic.twitter.com/rml6ukdlwJ
— Cut4 (@Cut4) August 30, 2023
Adam Duvall, man on fire
Adam Duvall, who has been notoriously streaky throughout his career, is officially on a power spree once again. The slugger, who started the season with 4 homers in six games before a long IL stint, has now hit a dinger in four straight games and in seven of his last nine. Unfortunately for the Red Sox, his power is not making a huge difference in the standings, as Boston dropped another game and is now 6.5 games out of the last wild card spot.
Adam Duvall has hit 7 home runs in his last 9 games. pic.twitter.com/jVO41BQONU
— Red Sox (@RedSox) August 30, 2023
Use the force, Luke Weaver
Thrust into action at the last minute, Mariners pitcher Luke Weaver had to cover for George Kirby’s late scratch. While his mound performance was far from ideal against the lowly A’s (7 hits and 3 runs allowed in 3.2 innings), he made up for it by giving us the web gem of the night. Following the initial confusion of an incoming broken bat, he broke to his right, slid, and delivered a perfect bouncing throw to nail the runner at first base. Never underestimate his power.
Web Gem, Pitcher Edition 💎 pic.twitter.com/wnuR6zyquc
— Seattle Mariners (@Mariners) August 30, 2023
A day after placing Matt Chapman on the IL, the Blue Jays announced that shortstop Bo Bichette will be joining him there, due to a strained right quadriceps. This marks the second IL stint for Bichette, who already missed most of August due to a knee injury. Losing the whole left part of the infield could not come at a worse time for Toronto, as they are now on the outside looking in for a playoff spot. Bichette’s spot in the roster will be covered by Mason McCoy, while there are already rumors that the Jays could experiment with Vladimir Guerrero Jr. back to playing some third base.
The Red Sox confirmed that outfielder Jarren Duran will undergo season-ending surgery on his toe. Despite already being on the 10-day IL, Duran’s injury was deemed significant enough to warrant surgery, although he should be able to return around Spring Training. The young outfielder had been one of the most reliable hitters for Boston, posting career-best numbers across the board, and will close out 2023 with a 2.2 fWAR.
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