David Shovein

Baseball Daily Dose

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Kemp Keeps Hope Alive

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Matt Kemp smashed a solo homer off Tyler Clippard in the ninth inning, breaking a 6-6 tie and salvaging a split of Wednesday’s doubleheader against the Nationals. After dropping game one earlier in the day, it appeared that the Dodgers would cruise to an easy victory in the nightcap, taking a 6-0 lead into the eighth inning.

After the Nationals put up six runs of their own in the eighth to tie the score, Kemp’s heroics were necessary to not only save the game, but perhaps the Dodgers’ season. With the Cardinals also winning on the evening, the Dodgers sit two games back in their chase for the second Wild Card in the National League. Had they been swept in the double-dip, their already dim outlook would look even bleaker.

Even with Wednesday’s heroic 2-for-4 performance, he’s been brutal in September. Through 13 games on the month, he’s hitting just .151 (8-for-53) with two homers and four RBI and an unimpressive 14/1 K/BB ratio. Hopefully this strong game springboards Kemp to a strong finish, because they’ll certainly need his bat to get hot in a hurry if they’re to have any hope of chasing down the Cardinals.



Harvey Outstanding in Finale


Matt Harvey delivered an outstanding performance in his final start of the 2012 season. After allowing a leadoff homer to Jimmy Rollins, he surrendered no other hits and walked three over seven dazzling innings of work. He also racked up seven strikeouts on the evening.

The 23-year-old right-hander has certainly made a strong impression in his first 10 MLB starts, posting a 2.73 ERA, 1.15 WHIP and 70/26 K/BB ratio over 59 1/3 innings. He’s done more than enough to lock down a spot in the Mets’ rotation for the 2013 season and looks to be a true ace in the making.

He represents a strong option in keeper formats, and should be drafted in 100% of re-draft leagues next Spring. His dazzling potential and high-strikeout upside could lead to him finishing as a top-25 starter as soon as the 2013 campaign.



Dylan Bundy Recalled by Orioles


Dylan Bundy, the Orioles’ extremely talented first round selection from the 2011 draft, was recalled from Double-A Bowie on Wednesday. It comes as a very surprising move, as he was expected to finish out his 2012 season in the fall instructional league, but with the O’s bullpen getting worn out in Tuesday’s 18-inning marathon with the Mariners, there was an immediate need for his services.

He’ll likely be used in a long relief role, and doesn’t figure to see much action down the stretch, but it’s still a very intriguing stage in his development. Having the opportunity to travel with the team and receive daily instruction from the coaching staff and the veteran pitchers on the team will surely enhance his development.

In his first professional season, Bundy posted a 9-3 record, 2.08 ERA, 0.92 WHIP and 119/28 K/BB ratio over 103 2/3 innings across three minor league levels. He’s certainly someone to keep a watchful eye on, and could make an impact in the Orioles rotation as soon as the 2013 season.




National League Quick Hits: Alfonso Soriano reached the 30-homer plateau for the first time since 2007 with a two-run shot in Wednesday’s loss to the Reds… Yadier Molina blasted his 20th homer in a win over the Astros… Marco Estrada tossed seven scoreless innings, leading the Brewers to their fourth straight victory… Kris Medlen delivered yet another outstanding performance, firing eight scoreless innings in a win over the Marlins… Jason Kubel extended his hitless streak to 21 at-bats, and has fallen to .253 on the season… Drew Stubbs recorded his third straight 30-steal season… Lance Lynn tossed 6 1/3 shutout innings in a victory over the Astros… Cole Hamels fanned 10 in a no-decision against the Mets… Ryan Howard belted a game-winning, two-run homer off Josh Edgin with two-outs in the ninth inning… Jordan Zimmermann pitched six strong innings of one-run ball in a victory over the Dodgers… John Axford notched his 30th save in a victory over the Pirates… David Wright snapped a 20-game homerless drought with a solo shot.


National League Injury News and Notes: Andrew Cashner has been shut down for the remainder of the season after experiencing more problems with his injured lat… Tyler Greene was a late scratch from the Astro’s lineup due to a knee injury and is considered day-to-day… Ryan Ludwick was removed from Wednesday’s game due to left groin tightness… Clayton Kershaw was able to play catch on flat ground on Wednesday, and the Dodgers remain hopeful that he’ll be able to return to the rotation before the end of the month… Aroldis Chapman threw a successful 25-pitch bullpen session, but is still at least a few days away from returning… Bud Norris was scratched from Wednesday’s scheduled start due to the flu… Reds’ skipper Dusty Baker left the team on Wednesday to receive a chest x-ray in order to rule out a potential case of pneumonia… Frank Francisco was unavailable to pitch on Wednesday due to tendinitis in his throwing elbow. Josh Edgin blew a save opportunity in his place.



American League Quick Hits: Ichiro Suzuki had a huge night, going 4-for-4 and stealing four bases in the nightcap of Wednesday’s doubleheader… Chris Archer notched the first win of his MLB career, allowing three runs over five innings against the Red Sox… Justin Verlander hurled six scoreless innings in a critical win over the Athletics… Miguel Cabrera blasted his 41st homer of the season, pulling him to within one of Josh Hamilton for the AL lead. He has a legitimate shot at achieving the first triple crown since the 1967 season… Liam Hendriks finally notched his first victory of the season on his 14th attempt… Josh Willingham smashed his 35 home run of the season and has now driven in 110… Jake Odorizzi will make his first major league start when he takes on the Indians on Saturday… Andy Pettitte returned from the DL to toss five scoreless innings in a win over the Blue Jays… Adam Jones belted his 30th home run of the season, a two-run shot in the 11th inning to deliver the Orioles another extra-inning victory.


American League Injury News and Notes: Asdrubal Cabrera left Wednesday’s game after aggravating his right wrist injury… Brett Anderson left his start against the Tigers in the third inning and has been diagnosed with a strained right oblique. It’s an injury that could require him to miss the remainder of the regular season… Adrian Beltre sat out Wednesday’s contest with intestinal issues, but remains hopeful that he’ll return on Thursday… Brian Matusz was rushed to the emergency room on Tuesday night after experiencing an allergic reaction, but has the issue under control and has returned to the team…Coco Crisp is dealing with a severe case of pink eye in both eyes and is considered day-to-day… Alex Avila missed a second straight game with what the Tigers are calling a “mild” concussion… Josh Hamilton sat out Wednesday’s contest due to vision/sinus issues, but is hopeful he’ll return on Thursday… Max Scherzer is hoping to be ready to make his regularly scheduled start on Saturday. If he can’t go, Drew Smyly would likely take his turn in the rotation.

Dave Shovein also contributes to The Hardball Times, Fantasy Pros 911 and Sports Draft Daily. You can follow him on Twitter as well.
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