LEADING OFF: MLB remembers 9/11; Donaldson, Sale return
A look at what’s happening around the majors today:
Major League Baseball will hold a moment of silence before all games to honor the victims and first responders of 9/11. Players, coaches and umpires will wear caps with a “We Shall Not Forget” ribbon patch.
During batting practice before the Miami-Mets game at Citi Field, New York players will wear caps of the five agencies that took part in the rescue and recovery efforts at the World Trade Center site: New York Police Department, Fire Department of New York, Port Authority Police Department, New York City Office of Emergency Management and the City of New York Department of Sanitation.
Former AL MVP Josh Donaldson is set to debut with Cleveland in his first big league game since May 28. The third baseman, who was traded from Toronto to the AL Central-leading Indians on Aug. 31, has been out most of the season because of a strained left calf. He recently played in four Triple-A rehab games, and is lined up to start at Tampa Bay.
Red Sox ace Chris Sale is ready to come off the disabled list and start against Toronto at Fenway Park. Boston manager Alex Cora says the left-hander will be eased back into action, going about two innings and throwing a maximum of 40 pitches for the AL East leaders. Sale originally went on the DL on July 31 with mild left shoulder inflammation, returned to pitch five dominant innings vs. Baltimore on Aug. 12, then went back on the DL. He is 12-4 with a 1.97 ERA and has struck out 219 in just 146 innings.
As Hurricane Florence menaces the East Coast, more games could be in jeopardy. There were rainouts Monday night in Philadelphia, where Nationals star Bryce Harper joined a grounds crew that used blow torches trying to get the field dry, and in New York — there have been 51 weather-related postponements this season after a total of 39 last year. The Nationals and Phillies are scheduled for a doubleheader at Citizens Bank Park, the Marlins visit the Mets and Baltimore hosts Oakland.
The Cardinals are hoping catcher Yadier Molina can play sometime during a seven-game homestand that began this week. The nine-time All-Star was out of the starting lineup for the fourth straight game Monday vs. Pittsburgh because of a hamstring problem. St. Louis held the second NL wild-card spot going into the day.