LEADING OFF: Martinez, Diamondbacks try to stay hot
A look at what’s happening all around the majors Tuesday:
J.D. Martinez and the Arizona Diamondbacks try to continue a pair of impressive streaks against the major league-leading Dodgers. Martinez homered in his final four at-bats during Monday night’s 13-0 victory against Los Angeles, including the seventh, eighth and ninth innings. The Diamondbacks will go for their 12th straight win when the series resumes Tuesday night. Zack Greinke gets the ball for Arizona, while Hyun-Jin Ryu tries to cool off Martinez and company.
Justin Verlander makes his much-anticipated debut for the Houston Astros when he starts at Seattle. The AL West leaders got the longtime Tigers ace last week minutes before the trade deadline, hoping he can help them win the World Series for the first time. The 34-year-old righty waived his no-trade rights to accept the deal. Verlander (10-8, 3.82 ERA) went 5-1 and his last seven starts for Detroit, striking out 56 and only once permitting more than two earned runs.
The Cleveland Indians go for their 13th straight victory, which would put them just one away from tying the longest winning streak in team history set last year. Jose Ramirez homered Monday as the AL Central leaders beat the White Sox 5-3 – on Sunday, he tied a major league record by getting five extra-base hits in a game. Danny Salazar (5-6, 4.30 ERA) starts in Chicago vs. lefty David Holmberg (2-3, 3.55 ERA).
The Cubs will see how pitcher Jake Arrieta is feeling, a day after he left his start in Pittsburgh because of tightness in his right hamstring. Brilliant in August, Arrieta says he thinks he’ll be OK to keep pitching for the NL Central leaders.
HOT AND NOT
Odubel Herrera has an 18-game hitting streak for the Phillies. He extended the string with a pinch-hit single Monday against the Mets. The outfielder was activated from the disabled list earlier in the day after being out because of a strained left hamstring. … Pablo Sandoval is hitless in his last 33 at-bats for San Francisco. The 2012 World Series MVP for the Giants returned to the team this summer after being cut by Boston, but has just one home run and four RBIs in 27 games following another 0-fer at Colorado.
The Yankees have only three outfielders on their roster – Aaron Judge, Brett Gardner and Jacoby Ellsbury. Aaron Hicks was put on the disabled list over the weekend, leaving New York without a backup who has a lot of outfield experience. Manager Joe Girardi says the playoff contenders could use infielders Ronald Torreyes or Tyler Wade as a fill-in this week in Baltimore.
Angels righty Garrett Richards makes his first start since April 5, when he strained his right biceps in his season debut. That was his first appearance in 11 months after an elbow injury cut short his 2016 season. Richards is set to start at Oakland. He won’t be on an exact pitch count, but manager Mike Scioscia said, ”there’s definitely a range. … We still have to take baby steps with him.”