LEADING OFF: Gibson dealt Cards again, Gray area in Texas
A look at what’s happening around the majors Friday:
The last time Philadelphia right-hander Kyle Gibson faced the St. Louis Cardinals, they hit four consecutive home runs off him in the first inning.
Nolan Arenado, Nolan Gorman, Juan Yepez and Dylan Carson went deep in succession Saturday, the first time in major league history a team homered four straight times in the first inning.
The Cardinals tied the MLB record for any inning with those four in a row. It was the first time they had done it, and the 11th time overall in big league history.
Arenado also hit a tiebreaking homer in the ninth inning of that game to power the Cardinals to a 7-6 win — one day after he hit for the cycle in a loss at Philadelphia.
Gibson (4-3, 4.91 ERA) will try to turn the tables in St. Louis when he faces Adam Wainwright (6-6, 3.26). The Phillies have a slugger of their own who has been on a home run tear lately in Kyle Schwarber. He leads the NL with 27 longballs.
YOUTH NOT WASTED
Two of baseball’s most talented young hitters are on display in Seattle when rookie phenom Julio Rodríguez and the Mariners host Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and the Toronto Blue Jays.
The 21-year-old Rodríguez was the AL rookie of the month for May and June, and the AL player of the week last week. He’s the first player in major league history to have 15 homers, 15 doubles and 20 stolen bases in the first 81 games of his career.
The 23-year-old Guerrero is enjoying another outstanding season at the plate after finishing runner-up for AL MVP last year when he led the league in homers, runs, on-base percentage, slugging percentage and OPS.
New York Mets right-hander Chris Bassitt felt sluggish for one day and ended up on the COVID-19 list for a week — and now he has regrets about how he handled the situation.
Bassitt said Thursday he “probably won’t” inform team and Major League Baseball officials if he feels COVID-19 symptoms in the future and that MLB should “just stop testing.”
He said he was fine the day after he informed the team about feeling a little run down but still had to miss a start.
“I guess the answer is I never should have said anything,” he said.
It’s a same-name matchup in Texas, where the pitcher’s mound will be a Gray area, so to speak. Sonny Gray (4-1, 2.47 ERA) starts for the AL Central-leading Minnesota Twins against Jon Gray (4-4, 3.96) and the Rangers, who have lost four straight.
Both teams were off Thursday. Texas, which is 4-17 in one-run games, just got swept in Baltimore — the first three-game sweep this season for the last-place Orioles.
Mets ace Jacob deGrom is scheduled to make his second minor league rehab start after an encouraging performance in the first one.
The two-time Cy Young Award winner struck out five of his six batters and threw 18 of 24 pitches for strikes Sunday night with Class A St. Lucie against the Jupiter Hammerheads. He hit 100 mph on the radar gun several times.
The right-hander hasn’t pitched in the majors since July 7 last year and isn’t expected back in the Mets’ rotation until after the All-Star break. He missed the second half of 2021 with right forearm tightness and a sprained elbow, then has been sidelined this season by a stress reaction in his right scapula that caused inflammation.
Rays left-hander Shane McClanahan (9-3, 1.74 ERA) looks to build on his excellent first half when he faces the last-place Reds in Cincinnati. Tampa Bay was off Thursday after winning two of three against AL East rival Boston at Fenway Park. Luis Castillo (3-4, 3.09), a prime trade candidate ahead of the Aug. 2 deadline, starts for Cincinnati.
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