LEADING OFF: Nationals try again to play, Gregorius slumps
A look at what’s happening around the majors today:
CAN WE JUST PLAY?
The Washington Nationals still haven’t finished a full game since last Sunday. Their matchup against the Yankees at home Tuesday night was suspended in the sixth inning because of rain, and the teams were washed out Wednesday. The Nats were off Thursday and rained out again Friday night against the Dodgers.
Washington and Los Angeles are now scheduled for a split doubleheader. And yep, an all-day rain is in the forecast at Nationals Park.
Yankees shortstop Didi Gregorius is in a 1-for-45 slump that’s lasted two weeks. He was batting .372 in late April and was chosen the AL Player of the Month. He hit his 10th home run on April 27, but hasn’t cleared the fence since then. Gregorius has struck out only four times in his last 10 games, but isn’t finding any open space.
Pirates center fielder Austin Meadows looks to build on his fine big league debut. The 23-year-old got two hits and stole a base Friday night at PNC Park in a 3-2 loss to San Diego. Meadows, a first-round draft pick in 2013, is filling in for injured Starling Marte.
Braves lefty Sean Newcomb (4-1, 2.51 ERA) has pitched 20 straight scoreless innings going into this start at home against Miami. The 24-year-old blanked the Marlins on one hit over six innings last weekend.
The A’s hope their starter can stay healthy through the first few innings in Toronto. On Thursday, Oakland righty Andrew Triggs left after 2 1-3 innings against the Blue Jays because of nerve irritation in his hand and arm. On Friday, lefty Brett Anderson exited after just one inning because of a strained shoulder. Lefty Sean Manaea (5-4, 2.35) is next up in Toronto.
Third baseman Chase Headley is free to sign with any team. He was released by the Padres on Friday and cleared waivers – a club that claimed him would’ve be responsible for the rest of his $13 million salary. Now, he comes at a fraction of that cost. The 34-year-old hit only .105 in 27 games.
Ender Inciarte still leads majors in stolen bases despite getting dropped from the top of the Braves’ order on April 29 in favor of Ozzie Albies. A five-year veteran in his third season with Atlanta, Inciarte has six of his 18 steals since the change, but manager Brian Snitker thinks he will have more chances to run as he gets more comfortable hitting lower in the lineup. Inciarte needs five stolen bases to surpass his single-season career high.